Parenting is Patience I Have Not

By Mark Antony Rossi

Being a parent is not a thankless job, it is a hopeless job. Regardless of your values passed or the time you spent with them, children emerge before your eyes as unique creatures. If any good has rubbed off is perhaps the only hope we can pray for. All other expectations are delusions.

After the first year of fatherhood I found myself closer to God. The combination of lack of sleep, endless diaper changes and getting peed in the eye made me seek a higher power. I needed the strength not to overcome but rather to resist running out the door.

There are books. There are classes. Yet these are baby milk-covered lies. Parenting is on the job training that ends with a giggling mini-monster urinating in your eye the moment the diaper is removed. There is no preparation for disaster. There is no preventing personal failure. There is no practice for feeling you are swimming in a sea of stupidity. You are captain. And you will hit the rocks of a dark island.

Any blessing you were told is told by a fool who is secretly joyous you have joined him in a task of emotional terror. No amount of baby pics or baby tales will elicit any genuine sympathy. They all have been there and think you are a moron. And you are.

Good parenting is supposedly a pillar of civilization but they never tell you that good parenting is a guarantee for civilized behavior. Kids listen only so much. In the end you might be preaching good values into the hollow of the wind. Maybe a quiet home with a chance to use the bathroom is all you can expect from child rearing.

About the Author: Mark Antony Rossi is a poet, playwright and author of the bioethics volume “Dark Tech” now available from Amazon. His most recent plays have been produced in Liverpool and New York. He also hosts a podcast called Strength to be Human.

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