I cannot win. I can only delay defeat. The morning always starts with an unspoken battle of wills. He wakes up and starts to pout, and we lay in bed pretending like we can’t hear him. Sometimes he falls back to sleep, most of the time his cries quickly gain steam until I give in and go get him, change his diaper, and then take him to roll around in our bed for a few very adorable minutes.
Starbucks K-cups have almost changed me into a morning person. Rumour has it their beans are grown in the caffeinated fields of heaven, and roasted on hell’s least sulfurous coals. Regardless of coffee, mornings are now filled with joy. This time spent watching Shep learn something new everyday will be short lived. I need to soak this up like a dry sponge.
My first great idea of the day was to build a chair barricade in a large doorway. This would keep Shep in the play room and require less effort on my part. Shep learned how to move chairs this morning. Immediate defeat. It was a swift kick to my fragile stay at home dad ego, and a realization that he will always find a way to win. I’m swollen with pride for him, and disappointed in my shortcomings all at the same time.
Vito (the dog) and Shep have really developed a strong relationship. Shep eats half of his food, and strengthens the bond by throwing the other half on the floor for Vito. We are lucky to have such a passive dog, because Shep rips out handfuls of his tail hair, and only gets face licks in response. With Shep at home now, Vito has really stepped up to the plate, and helped to keep him from crying all the time.
One of my new responsibilities is to ensure that the house is clean, and ready to show at any time. This is an added layer to my training as a stay at home dad. I have always been a neat freak, but with a messy toddler and a hyper dog, I end up cleaning constantly. Shep is very interested in figuring out the broom. My goal is to never let him touch it. This will keep him curious, and he will continue to follow me around while I sweep. Well, at least for now.
At some point I hope to do the unthinkable and compare being a stay at home dad to being a working dad. For now, I will reserve judgement and just record my thoughts and reflections as accurately as possible.