Ever since we got pregnant, Annie and I talked endlessly about how we were going to raise this kid to be the most perfect human being on the planet. It was as if we knew all there was to know about parenting. Funny thing is…even if you knew it all the baby (or toddler or teenager) doesn’t give a damn…usually.
I say all that to lead me to this…one of the things we discussed often was how Sammy would be integrated into our lives not the other way around. Annie and I have a certain lifestyle and we didn’t want to give it up in order to have a baby. There were so many people that said our lives were over, we would never sleep again, and that our lifestyle would go from wine, food, and travel to spit up, crying, and diapers.
Well, I’m here to give you the State of the Union a little over four months after bringing Sammy home.
We first took him out when he was about 12 days old and while I was nervous and hesitant, Sammy slept on that outing. You see, I’ve had this anxiety thing take over anytime we leave the house with him for the most part because dealing with a baby in public is a bit more difficult than being at home where you have all his needs set up. I’ve also worried about the WHAT IF of him losing his mind and screaming at a restaurant or a friend’s house or a winery.
Again, I’ve been filled with nerves and anxiety yet every time (with the exception of a couple of times) Sammy has been calm, asleep, or chugging down a bottle. We’ve taken him to multiple different restaurants more times than I can count at this point and have probably been to wineries a good 20 times or so. We took a two and a half day trip up to Monterey, been to friend’s houses often, and had many get-togethers at our house. He’s been fine in all these situations yet each time we’re about to leave the house I get that same feeling of anxiety.
I blame it on how hyper-sensitive I am to not be a burden on other people. Whether I’m in line at the store or driving or walking across the street I try to get the heck out of people’s way as soon or as fast as I can. I don’t like holding people up. I don’t want to be the guy with the fussy or crying baby at the restaurant. I don’t want to be in the way. I don’t like asking anyone for help. Not sure where this comes from in me but it exists and here we are.
I bring all of this up for a couple reasons. Knowing that I get this anxiety each time has been interesting to deal with and work toward overcoming. It’s also interesting that despite all the wonderfully negative words of wisdom about having a baby…our lives have not ended. Our lives are different but not over. We still do the wine and food stuff but we do it differently. We’ve only traveled to Monterey thus far but we have more stuff on the list.
Everything is perspective. Looking at my anxiety with a different perspective forces me to learn and grow. I am trying to look at things differently to deal with it. I’ve also realized that some of that anxiety is my own social anxiety and my tendency to be an introvert. But we persist…we push forward and push our comfort levels and go do things.
It’s also been fascinating to watch how Sammy does in all these scenarios. Watching him and trying to see things through his eyes has been intriguing. Watching all three of us grow as individuals and as a family unit has been interesting as well.
The lesson: Perspective is a funny thing. We all have it but tend not to look at things from any other perspective. The people that have negative things to say about having a baby or myself living with different types of anxiety and not looking at things differently to understand it…perspective is important, but only if you are taking the time to look at things from other perspectives versus just yours.
We’re raising our little slobber monster the way we want to but we are always ready to pivot, adjust where we need to, and check out different perspectives. Our goal is to be open to all the possibilities but to avoid negativity at all costs. It does nothing for us and more importantly we do not want to corrupt Sammy with it.
So this is the State of our Union as of today. It could all change tomorrow but it’s been a really cool adventure this first four plus months. We’re doing it our way and we know some people don’t like it or some have things to say behind our back but you know what…I don’t care.