188 days. That sum seems far from real. Is 7/20/20 really that far behind me already? Summer faded. Fall flew by. Winter still has me in its grips. Why haven’t I been writing routinely? In large part, I haven’t had the urge. I’ve been taking care of my son for the majority of most of those days. I’ve also been reading and painting as my emotional and artistic outlets. The lack of consistent writing isn’t the concern. The real concern is what have I truly done with all of that time? What have I accomplished in the nearly 200 days that have streamed by like a technicolor ribbon?
I suppose without a traditional measuring stick, it is difficult to say what I have accomplished in that time span. While I’m thinking about it, however, I am reminded that I have done my due diligence as a father. The quality time I have been able to spend with my two and half year old son will pay dividends down the road. It makes me realize how truly lucky I am to be able to spend so much time with him. There are times when I need space from him. And there are times when I lose patience with him. But, he continually reminds me to stay present, seek novelty, maintain a borderline childlike indifference, and to acknowledge the miracle of the time he and I get to spend together.
I have flashbacks of a vague outline of my routine: large mason jar of water, 1 liter french press of coffee, bike ride, reading, walk or bike ride with Olyn, play time, nap time, play time, bike ride, bed time. Over and over again. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. It is beginning to feel like groundhog day. During the course of those borderline monotonous days, I have taught him his letters, shapes, colors, numbers, and a wide variety of things that surprise most others. I guess it hasn’t been all for naught. But, at the same time, I can’t help but feel guilt for not doing more for the world at large. However, if I raise Olyn to be a better person than I am, I suppose that in a way, I have performed my duties as a human being for the betterment of the species.
Does that mean I should be content? Does ensuring the well-being of my progeny prove my worth? I feel like there isn’t a clear-cut answer. It seems more intricate than that. Shouldn’t I be contributing to society as a whole, rather than ensuring my son is a more capable member than myself? Does it truly matter in the long run? Does anything at that rate? I suppose I must strike a balance between the continuation of my family in a positive direction, and the perpetuation of the social, cultural, and national spheres in which I have lived. Or do I?
So much of me is looking for a way to break the mold. I don’t want to be just another brick in the wall. I want to be autonomous. I want to be free and independent. It is easier said than done, but I am positive that it is possible. I am still unsure of how I am going to go about making this happen, but, I am positive that I will be be able to if I apply myself correctly. We shall see. In the meantime, I am going to focus on what is within my control. I am looking forward to spending more time with Olyn, and the arrival of our second in late March. Onwards and upwards. -TRC