28 February 2014, by Kelvin Ang
How do you define a Dad? Of course there’s the biological way but for me, 37 years of life could not have prepared me what Fatherhood had taught me in the past 9 years. So how do you know when you have successfully crossed over and truly embraced the biggest role of your life?
1. Your criteria for what determines a good restaurant changes. It used to be all about the food and ambience. Now it’s because of that new box of crayons and the kids get to draw on the table, never mind the food.
2. And when making your dinner selection at the restaurant, you think about how it pairs with what your kid ordered. All because you know you will most probably be eating half of it. So… should I order with the Rib-eye Steak with your Chicken Nuggets? Oh, you are ordering the Spaghetti Bolognese? Maybe the Pan-fried Salmon might be a more appropriate complement.
3. The phrase “we’ll see” is the platinum card of our parental phrase arsenal. Why? Simply because it allows you to defer the ‘No’ – and the whining that comes with it – to a later and more convenient time or date. The child holds onto the hope that this request may still be granted, and therefore withholds all protest. The parent buys extra time, during which the child may forget about the request altogether, or you have made it home, where whining can be sufficiently contained. Win-win situation, no?
4. You not only know what channel Nickelodeon, Disney Junior and Cartoon Network are on, you can punch those numbers on the remote by feel without opening your eyes on an early weekened morning.
5. Speaking of kids’ programmes, you get the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse tune stuck in your head during meetings at work!
6. You get sympathy anxiety for complete strangers when you see their kid throwing a tantrum at Toys ‘R’ Us.
7. Your currency reference has subconsciously shifted to Ninjago (or other) toys. Now, your money ranting resembles something like this: “What? $100 for a tank of petrol? I can buy 2 Ninjago sets with that!”
8. You know what this week’s Happy Meal toy is, and it shall be Cheeseburger for lunch again today.
9. When crossing the street with your friends, you reflexively extend your arm out in front of them when a car passes by.
10. The new best feeling in the world is after you have successfully put your children to bed.
I’m sure there are a lot more but at the end of the day, whatever people told you about Parenthood, they are all true! My kids fill my house with love, joy, light, and happiness. But they do grow up just as quickly too. Becoming a Dad has been the most fulfilling and enriching life experience that I have ever had and I am still enjoying it. And when you finally understand it, it is because you have truly crossed over as well.