The birth of your first baby is perhaps the most unforgettable event in your whole life, not just because you will have live and breathing reminder all your life, but because it brings enormous changes in your lifestyle. Getting married, buying a house or moving to a different country with different culture, pales in comparison to having a baby.
Once your baby comes home, your lifestyle and your perspective in life and the world will never be the same again. With marriage, at least you get the courtship and the honeymoon phase to prepare you and let you get used with each other. But with parenthood, you don’t get much preparation. Once you land on the ground with a thud, you have to start running. You can prepare as much as you can, but you will still reel at the impact.
Once you become a parent, worry will become your life companion. You will only find the real meaning of worry when you have children. At the beginning, you will worry about weight gain, feeding and your ability to be parents. Once your baby turns into a toddler, you worry about behaviour, sickness. Then when he starts school, you worry about school performance, safety and social influence. Even after your child has left home, get married, and has children you will still worry. You will worry about his job security, his lifestyle, his partner and his children.
Once you become a parent, you will never experience real freedom again until your children leave home. Self-centredness has no place in the parental world. When before children you were free to go when and where, now your every decision revolves around your children. No more spur of the moment decisions. No more travelling abroad with just your hand luggage. No more hiking the Himalayas. No more spontaneous decision to stay late at parties.
You will be like Cinderella. Just when the party gets hotter, you’ll have to make a mad dash to the door to get home and let the baby sitter off.
Still, it’s not all that bad. Look on the bright side, you now have a reason not to stay and chat with the most boring person in the world. You can now say, ‘sorry to leave you but I have to make sure I speak to others before I dash home to my baby.’
Just keep thinking that you will not be tied to this ball and chain forever. This will only last around 30 years or so.