How to Be a Dad

How to Be a Dad

5 Things I Will Never Do (Now That I’m a Dad)

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I’ve often told my friends that fatherhood changes you in all the predictable ways. Fighting to keep my individuality and identity, I believe I’ve won more than I’ve lost, and honestly, I’ve lost parts of myself that were bullshitty anyway.

But there were some interesting results I didn’t foresee. Namely, I didn’t realize it would change my desire to do insane stuff.

So, here are five things I’ll (probably) never do, now that I’m a Dad…


 

1. Skydiving

I am a child of extreme sports before they were given such a ridiculous name. I was an avid skateboarder and enjoyed many “alternative” (now as popular as primetime) sports. I now enjoy challenging my fears, as long as they don’t involve beheading or fatality.

Jumping out of an airplane probably won’t be making my shortlist of foolish, adrenaline-pumping activities. My life shouldn’t be saved by just a backpack and an oversized duvet cover.

Plus, my wife has assured me that if I were to try and didn’t die attempting to skydive, she’d kill me when I reached the ground.
 


 

2. Sleep

Bwahahahahahahahahaha. Sorry. I mean. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA HAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA.
 

Road rage fist fights
 

3. Road Rage Fist Fights

I live in LA, so I’ve lost count the number of times I’ve WANTED to get out of my car to “physically redirect” someone’s face. Drivers here are too fast, too slow, too stupid and too stuck to their phones to realize that they almost killed me, my wife and my son in the car. I worry for the fate of mankind. Worse yet is the subsequent attitude after they’ve cut me off or nearly run someone over. The hubris and ego of people driving here has reached a level not-before seen since Cannonball Run.

So, it’s time to put away the brass knuckles and Irish accent, and become Mother Theresa so I gently comment on the idiosyncrasies of LA drivers in front of my son. “My gosh, that person is really creative with his turn signal. I wonder if it’s broken. Perhaps I should let him know, so he doesn’t involve himself in a collision.”
 

Don't Feed the Unicorns
 

4. Hunt For Unicorns

I have neither the time nor the energy to spend chasing after a creature that arguably can’t get enough of me. Me and unicorns go way back. Those bastards are always trying to get me to ride them. They keep mentioning something about the movie Legend, and my name. Something about Candy Mountain. No idea what any of that means.

As you can probably tell, I am sort of the Unicorn Whisperer.
 


 

5. Fail

Big old bag of nope. Nope sandwiches. Nope.
 

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34 Comments

34 Responses to “5 Things I Will Never Do (Now That I’m a Dad)”

  1. Holly Norton says:

    HOLY WOW. Is that really you on number 3?? That picture is HOT!

  2. Crystalyn says:

    But if you give up on the search for unicorns, who will carry on your great work?! (And heck yes to #2)

  3. Antonia says:

    Right on! I dig #5.

  4. Michelle says:

    Oh wow…reading #4 brought on some flashbacks! Chaaaarrrliiiiiiie…!

  5. Ray says:

    Number 5. Right on buddy. That’s the bottom line right there. As fathers we are not permitted to accept failure in anything.

    As for giving up on the extreme sports… don’t. I still snowboard and given the chance I’d still jump out of a plane or a bridge. We serve as examples in everything we do. If you shut down a part of who you are then what kind of example is that to your children. I want my kids to fear nothing. I tell my daughter nearly every day that there is nothing she can’t do.

    Not my job to tell her she can’t be a UFC fighter or a fighter pilot because it’s scares the crap out of me. My job to give them the balls to choose and the fortitude to see it through.

    Good luck… and yeah… no fighting. LOL!

  6. Louise says:

    I fully support your wife on point #1 but there has to be a wide definition of fail for #5. I fail all the time….fail to find my patience, fail to be 100% in the moment, fail to notice the little things. Where I don’t fail is in acknowledging those failures for myself AND for my children. They need to see us fail so that we can teach them the importance of accountability.

  7. WeirdFish says:

    Things you WILL do as a dad:

    Re: #1) Know what a duvet cover is.
    Re: #4) Put down that baggie of shrooms.

    :)

  8. Gale says:

    #2 makes #3 and #5 very difficult.

  9. the grumbles says:

    liar. you would totally search for unicorns with a purely hypothetical girl-child and don’t even try to act like you wouldn’t.

  10. Alexis says:

    My husband used to jump out of planes, as did his Mother beforehand. I used to veto the skydiving thing post-kids too. Now I’ve amended my position to, “….until you get lots and lots of life insurance.”

  11. Terry says:

    #2 yes you can, just not real sleep
    #4 can totally be done with the kids
    #5 you will fail countless times, just will win in the long run

  12. Martin says:

    #2 is possible – you just need the right earplugs …

  13. Ted says:

    Get the insurance, jump out of the airplane. Maybe when the kids are a little older, but do it. I have three teenagers and flew a helicopter for the first time last week. Jumping out of an airplane is next. :-))

    I’m with Louise on the failing part. For better or worse, nobody keeps you honest in failure like a child.

  14. Amy says:

    Never stop hunting for unicorns.

  15. stacey says:

    As to Number 3 I have found myself saying something along the lines of, “God safely get you to your destination.” Sometimes its a bit forced but I still say it. Last night I almost got hit and was steaming about it for all of about 12 seconds and then it was gone. The thing that threw me though was that I live in a tiny town in Southeastern Washington State… Why do I have to put up with California drivers!? >.<

  16. Christina says:

    I have to agree for the most part that becoming a parent (mostly) changes us for the good.

  17. Kathleen says:

    “My gosh, that person is really creative with his turn signal. I wonder if it’s broken. Perhaps I should let him know, so he doesn’t involve himself in a collision.” Committing this to memory. Thank you

  18. Big old bag of nope – perfection.

  19. Erin says:

    #6: Curse. Whoops, my husband failed on that one- he went to talk to my daughter about how the book “Huck Finn” was going and accidentally switched the first letters. She was literally on the floor laughing. :)

    • Christine Taylor says:

      My Professor In Community College Was Introducing A Speaker. Her NamewWas Faye Tucker…..In Front Of About 400 Students And Staff….bahahaha

  20. Stefan Loble says:

    For me, the difference in reading #5 before and after I was a Dad was:

    Before: “I rock and there’s no way I’ll fail at this”.

    After: “I wish I could bend the world, so nothing ever harms you son”.

    But that’s not possible…

  21. Laurie says:

    How dare you not hunt for unicorns! My eyes swelled a bit at the end, You are a good daddy!

  22. BRETT STOKES says:

    #1 I was skydivin’ before my son was born and I’m gonna keep on skydiving.

    #2 I’m a firefighter/paramedic, what the heck is sleep?

    #3 I will continue to car rage fist fight, my son has to learn there are winners and losers in everything.

    #4 I will continue to hunt unicorns, They’re delicious and I have to feed my family somehow.

    #5 Dang sure aint gonna happen.

  23. Joe Wickman says:

    I will never forget the chill that ran down my spine when I realized my life would be forever changed (and limited) by having our first child. 4 kids later I’d say I’ve gotten over it for the most part. The further you go, the more meaningful results from the sacrifices you make.

  24. Got to agree with the guys who have dissed #5 dude. Failures in certain things, at certain points in life, are part and parcel of life itself. Where I do agree with you on that point is; you fail if you don’t learn from your failures (mistakes).
    Accept them, work out where it went wrong and change it so you won’t fail next time.
    I’m currently out of work, struggling just to exist, let alone provide for my family. I don’t see myself as a failure! I’m working on changing that particular status quo, and if I never find a new job, I still won’t see myself as a failure. That was out of my hands. I’ll be able to keep my head up and say “I tried.”
    The bond of love between a dad & his kids is what will keep us strong, and that will never go away.
    Keep hunting them unicorns too man. The next generation of unicorn hunter has to learn that skill from somewhere!

  25. Brianne says:

    What? #2? Really. You surely slept and sleep more than your lady! Surely, you must. Almost every dad I know does. Now I just tell my baby daddy that if he expects me to act nice and look pretty, I’d better help out more. Doesn’t seem to work. Wah.

  26. Sara says:

    My husband and I went skydiving about a week before we started “trying” for our one-and-only and got pregnant immediately. I tell people I’d love to do it again only now I have to wait until he’s at least 18 and out on his own :-)

  27. Great post!! I have noticed my husband has calmed down a lot since he became a father as well. Now that he has a little girl in the mix things have changed even more!!

  28. Laura says:

    I had a professor in college who told a story about LA road rage & kids. She lived in Pasadena & did her doctorate at USC, 3 yr old kid along for the commute many times. Since she didn’t want to swear in front of him she called bad drivers “buddies”. Once day a friend of hers came over & looked at her son & said “Hey Buddy!” to which he replied “I’M NOT A BUDDY!!!”

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