Every year around this time, a million different websites do some goofy version of a March Madness competition. So far I’ve seen brackets for beer, TV shows, bands, even junk food.
But has anyone done one about parenting? Probably! But now I have too! Introducing March Sadness: Dad and Buried’s Tournament of Complaints!
Where even the winner sucks!
Part of the reason I started this blog was to prove that it is possible to have kids and keep some semblance of your pre-parent life, and some semblance of your pre-parent personality, and some semblance of your pre-parent vocabulary.
In my case that mostly meant, respectively: going to bars, concerts and movies; being a cynical, sarcastic jerk; and swearing a lot. If you read my blog, you already know I’m still a cynical, sarcastic jerk who swears a lot.
But I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to some attrition. Parenting changes you, that’s obvious. You’re a shell of the person you used to be. I don’t even know who you are anymore.
Now let’s find out how much it has changed me, with a good old-fashioned Q & A!
A few weeks ago, I questioned whether I am a good parent. My answer was no.
Both before and since I posted that piece, I’ve been told I’m a good dad, by family members, by online acquaintances, by total strangers who read my blog and follow my Facebook page.
But I don’t believe the hype.
Not because they’re wrong; despite my hand-wringing, I’m probably a pretty good dad. (And even if I’m not, it probably doesn’t matter.)
Because they have no idea.
On Friday, I wrote about our tendency, as parents, to overvalue our impact on our kids.
We wring our hands over every little thing we do wrong, terrified that the slightest misstep will set our kids on the wrong path. But once you consider how many other influences are out there, you realize that such micromanagement – of our parenting, of their lives – is impossible.
I can’t get my son to do the littlest things right now, why should I think I have the power to get him to do big things when he’s older?
I’m kind of a big deal. But you already knew that. I mean, I’m regularly featured on the Huffington Post.
Of course, even if I weren’t a world-renowned blogger whose diatribes about how living with children is like being in prison have been translated into multiple languages and who has been subsequently been hated-on by people on multiple continents, I’d still be pretty damn important. Because I’m a parent.
And if kids are our most valuable resource, then parents are fucking priceless.
Or are we?