January 28, 2009

Book #14: Things I Learned About My Dad (In Therapy)

I went into Things I Learned About My Dad, not really being able to relate. I didn't grow up with a father, so I don't really understand the complicated relationships people have with their fathers. I do have a good step-dad who's a good father to my little sister. But when he first started dating my mother, I was nearly 17 years-old and I'm pretty sure he wondered why her annoying roommate was forever bumming rides and money.

Heather Armstrong, of the wildly popular Dooce.com, assembled the essays for Things I Learned About My Dad from amongst tons of other popular bloggers. They come from all different points of views, from mothers, fathers, sons and daughters. I especially enjoyed the ones about being a new dad to a newborn, since I've witnessed that particular phenomenon myself. The essays written by adults looking back on their fathers' lives were particularly moving.

One thing I can relate to in this book, is how much new parents become obsessed with bowel movements. I don't think a day goes by without us talking about dirty diapers. Rob and I never discussed bodily functions until we had a kid. Wait, that's not entirely true. He did reveal to me once that when he was little, he learned going number 1 (snicker) was "pee-pee" and number 2 was "going potty". Which boggled my mind, because I always thought "potty" referred to the actual toilet. Though in truth, I grew up saying "I'm going to the bathroom", no specifics necessary. I don't think I started saying "I've gotta pee" until I was a drunken teenager at summer camp. (Just kidding Mom! That totally never happened.)

One thing I have learned about fatherhood is that sons adore their daddies. Every morning I go wake Cooper up to get him ready for daycare, and the first thing he says is "Daddy?" and then he keeps up a running commentary about Daddy for the rest of the morning. Sometimes I wonder if babies are hard wired to think of mama as a given. But somehow they know that if they have a daddy, well that's something special.

1 comment:

Schovillova said...

When I was in Prague I taught private English lessons at students' homes. Once I asked Lubos if I could you his bathroom. He said 'Oh, you want bath?' Realizing my native English blunder I corrected myself and asked where his restroom was. He responded 'you are tired?' Moral of the story: When in Europe, just ask for the toilet and you'll get a toilet. Duh.

Oh, and when we were (not)drunk teenagers at summer camp we didn't bother with potties or toilets, we just went 'pee' off our porches. When it was dark of course and the campers were all tucked into bed.