Picture of my Daughter

6 a.m. and I am asleep dreaming whatever it is I was dreaming when inside my dream I hear the voice of a little girl that says….

“Daddy, I just pooed in the potty and I need you to wipe my butt.”

And thus ended my sleep time for that night.

My Daughter, Gia, when she was a little over a year old.

For those without kids, you always hear about the negative things that come with parenting.  And every bit of it is true….

Kids change everything.

Sleeping in is no longer optional.  Neither are last minute excursions without them tagging along.  They are one man wrecking crews / home-tearer-uppers.  They won’t be ignored (they have no problem repeating what they want until you notice). They make requests often, resist when you ask them to do something and cry when you tell them no.  They don’t eat what you want them to and rarely when you want them to.  They bungle up your work schedule and single handedly can destroy a day before the day even starts…Your sex life goes down the drain because moments alone rarely happen or you are too exhausted to care.

Now, if you think I am complaining, I’m not.

You see, today, I was at my daughter’s ballet class  (she’s 4).  I was looking through the looking glass at her and watching as she mimicked the other kids around her while dancing to the Dora Theme Song.  There was a look of pure joy in her eyes as she awkwardly went from move to move.  This wonderful child that was more a part of me than I am to myself was rocking and rolling.  Innocent.  Pure.  Angelic.  Better than me by a long shot.

And that’s the payoff.  Those tiny moments when you discover that THIS is what life and living is truly about.

Before Gia came into this world, I was reckless.  I wasn’t suicidal by any means but the notion of caring whether I died today, tomorrow or 50 years from now never crossed my mind.  To put it plainly, I really didn’t have much to live for and the small things that I did were so small that it never crossed my mind.  I simply didn’t care.

But watching my daughter dance today made me think that I hoped that I would be alive to see all those milestones throughout her life.  And this is the profound aspect of having a child that is simply indescribable to someone who doesn’t have kids.  It those moments that make parenting truly a gift.  There is absolutely nothing that can describe it when those little flashes of positive light comes breaking through.

It makes being woken up a 6 a.m. from a dream to wipe a butt worth it.

Kids change everything because they give you a reason to want to live.