Harsh Reality

So I spent the weekend back in Boston, at the wedding of a friend. He is just about the last of the old crew to tie the knot – in fact, most of the founding members have moved onto the child-bearing portion of our evening, with yours truly joining their ranks oh-so-shortly – so a lot of the boys were back in town. Hanging down at Pino’s (Go Eagles!).

Being that my gorgeous, pregnant wife accompanied me to the wedding – and the fact that I’m becoming a father is about the only thing I ever think about these days – babies were a hot topic of conversation all weekend. And if there was one thing that put a damper on what was a fantastic, incredibly fun weekend of festitivies, it was the blunt honesty of my friends who already have kids. They were pulling no punches when it came to giving me the dirt on being a dad, and some of those punches went right to the kidneys.

Now, I pride myself on telling it like it is, but Jesus Christ, ease up a little guys, will ya? At least fake a smile when you sigh and say “it’s tough.” I mean, I’ve read enough books and seen enough Judd Apatow flicks to know how much having a kid changes your life, but glimpsing the resignation and defeat on my friends’ faces is giving me nightmares. And seeing as it’s clearly too late for me to turn back the clock on this whole baby thing – though the deadbeat option definitely looms – maybe, for my sake, you could sugarcoat things a bit.

But no. Sugar was not on the menu.

I do have to hand it to my friends, though. They cut through the B.S. You usually hear about how amazing it is to have kids, how unadulteratedly happy it makes you. Blah blah blah. Enough of that; I’m all for the low-down. Seven months in, I think it’s high time for it. At least, it would have been about 8 months ago. Getting the true scoop this past weekend, with less than two months to go? It was sobering. Well, maybe not “sobering”; it was a fun wedding. But you know what I mean.

Hopefully when the baby lands (you can throw babies, right?), I’ll feel a bit more calm about the whole prospect of spending the rest of my life with a money-sucking, time-erasing, stress-creating leech crawling, and then walking, in my wake.

But right now, thanks to my friends, I feel more like Mel Gibson’s ex-girlfriend: shell-shocked and terrified and Russian.

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