Dad or Parent?

This morning, while playing trains with my son, I felt like a dad. Since he was born a little more than two years ago, I guess I’ve always just felt like a dad.

An hour after dropping him off at my mother-in-law’s, where he spends his day while mom and dad work, I felt, for the first time, like a parent.

Why the change?

Today was the “Parents Coffee” at what will be his preschool starting in October. My wife and I were sitting among a group of probably 50 other parents listening to the director of the school go over all the details and what not of how they operate.

A couple of thoughts going through my head during all of this:

  • Damn, this preschool situation is a whole thing. He’ll be going twice a week from October through mid-May. I knew this all along, but it hit me today. He’s going to school. We signed permission slip after permission slip and medical forms and library card applications. This is real. Very real. Isn’t he just two? Isn’t all this stuff for older kids? I should enjoy all this, because we’ll be filling out Financial Aid Forms before we know it.

  • Again, it’s my competitive spirit, but, as a parent, how do you sit in a group like that and not have thoughts go through your head like, my kid knows his colors. He can count to 10. He might not know the ABC song, but he knows his letters. He’s gonna be the smartest one in the class.

  • Are any of the other parents here thinking the same things I am?

I was having a hard time focusing as a parent. It wasn’t a case of information overload as much of it was a case of, wow, our son is going to school!

But, thanks to the director, I was able to think like a dad again. I’m not really sure why I think this is the coolest thing in the world, but the big news was that all the two-year-olds get their own cubby to hold their stuff. I mean, how cool is that? His little Red Sox backpack will have it’s own place to stay while he’s learning and having fun.

And, when I as a parent goes to drop him off at school, I’ll leave feeling like a dad when I watch him put his stuff carefully away in his very own cubby.

Yup, my son is going to school.

Eight Miles High (well, not quite)

If you know me, you know I’m competitive. Very competitive. To the point where I’m nervous about teaching my son how to play games — even something as innocent as Candyland. I play to win. Always.

If you also know me, you know that while I love sports, it’s safe to say I wasn’t born with the best set of athletic skills.

Very competitive. Not a great athlete. Interesting combination.

Where is this going? I’ll tell you.

I made it just more than halfway up a climbing wall yesterday. That may not sound like much to you. But, to me, I might as well have been on Everest.

I don’t consider myself afraid of heights. I’m more afraid of ladders or any other tool you need to get to the height. Once I’m there, it’s no problem. It’s the getting there than can be a problem.

So, when my five co-workers and I went to a Challenge Course yesterday for some teambuilding, I was like, hmmm, not really sure I’m going to be into this climbing thing.

But, once there and seeing the climbing wall, my competitiveness took over. So much that I wanted to climb first.

With encouragement and guidance from my office mates, I reached my max height. I couldn’t believe I had made it that far — let alone how hard it was.

I felt really good about what I did. I mean, again, unless you really know me, you don’t know how big of a deal that was.

What killed me though, was then watching the next five go…two of whom reached the top. Being able to visualize what they did and see their course, I was like, OK, I can get to the top. Now that I really see it, I can get there. My competitive spirit was what was driving me to want to do it again — so I could be better than I was the first time.

So, that’s my story. I climbed. Kind of high. Higher than I thought I could go. That’s the cool part. It may not have seemed like a big deal to someone that could scale the wall without issue, but to me, I might as well have been, as The Byrds sang, Eight Miles High.

Stumped by a 2-year-old

I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to mention my son.

He’s 2. Oh, and he’s the coolest thing in the world (running neck and neck with his mom).

It’s a breakfast ritual that my son always wants to have some “Daddy juice” — which is nine times out of 10 a mixture of orange and cranberry juice (minus the vodka, madras fans).

He loves to take big sips from a big glass. It’s just one of those little things that is fun to watch.

Well, this morning, I threw him for a little loop — unintentionally, of course.

I had run out of cranberry, so my glass was full of just orange juice — or so I thought.

“Daddy yellow juice. Daddy yellow juice.”

“Would you like to try some,” I asked.

“Pllllllleeeeease,” he responded. “Daddy yellow juice.”

I told him that this wasn’t the usual concotion that this was just orange juice.

“No, Daddy yellow juice,” he said stating the obvious.

I couldn’t really disagree with him. I had new juice and, despite its name, it was yellow.

Long Live Roy G. Biv

I guess I’m still not fully over this Pluto’s no longer a planet thing.

How can you just do that? Well, apparently there are some science guys who can.

Gone is My Very Eager Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas. What do we replace it with? How about My Very Eager Mother Just Served Us Noodles? At least until another planet is stripped of its title. Or another is added.

Oh, and another thing….did you know that Uranus was originally named Herschel? For real. It was. My question is, how do you decide to change the name from something as simple as Herschel to something as Uranus?

Maybe I’m under-estimating the sense of humor of these science guys?

Well, here I am.

*tap, tap*

Is this on?

A friend asked me today if I blogged. After admitting that I had thought about it, but hadn’t pulled the trigger, she said, “Give it a try.”

So, here I am.

It’s 1:58 a.m. I should be in bed. But, I’m here. Creating something that I’m not sure anyone will read. Maybe you will. Maybe you won’t.

And I’m OK with that. Really.

Because this is for me. Well, and for you. If you like it.

Let me know if you do. And let me know if you don’t. After all, I’m going to let you know what I like, and, more importantly, what I don’t like.

Blogging is a two-way street, right?

All I can think about right now (remember, it’s basically 2 a.m.) is, “is this what Doogie felt like?”

With that, my first blog entry concludes.

See you soon. I hope.