“I feel like my life is over.”
I said this as Sarah sat on the bed next to me this past Saturday evening. I laid there feeling as though nothing in the world could make me happy, wanting to go to sleep – to get on with another day – yet not wanting this one to end, because then it would be gone.
I’m a fairly level-headed, laid-back person, but I had a bit of a breakdown, which is unusual. Sarah and I’s first child will be born any day now, and we’re very excited. I’ve been looking forward to being a father for a while. I’m excited to raise children and enter that stage of life. Hear me right – I’m thrilled about having kids. I’m ready to be a dad.
However, for the past few months I have become increasingly . . . anxious, is the only word I can think of. Not nervous about having kids, just more aware of the major change that’s about to take place. I’ve been analyzing my life and all the things I have and (mostly) have not accomplished. I worry that once we have a kid to take care of, the smaller amount of free time will strangle and kill any hope of fulfilling my life’s dreams. I worry that Sarah and I won’t have time to spend together, to be romantic, to enjoy each other’s company. In many ways, I feel like my life is about to end.
As I’ve been more aware of what I’m doing with my life, I’ve become hyper-protective of our free time, not wanting it to get eaten up by endless activities and tasks. So, Saturday evening came, and we had spent a good portion of the day getting things done around the house. We had a few hours left in the day, and finally, I thought, we’d have some time to sit down and relax, to spend some time together. Then something came up that we had to take care of – another task, a chore – and the rest of our evening was swept away before we realized it.
As we sat there and I explained how I felt to Sarah, it all sounded so silly, spoken out loud. I am excited about this new chapter of life, but I think it’s the unknown factor that makes it overwhelming. All I know is my life up to this point. I know that I’ll still have free time with kids. I know that in a way, my life is only just beginning. I know in my head that the joy they bring will trump all these things I’m thinking, but experience is what brings understanding.
I hesitated to post this at first, because I don’t want anyone to get the wrong idea and think I don’t want kids or something. I decided to post it because I know I’m not the only new parent who’s found himself suddenly struggling with similar thoughts. I know it’s normal, and in my better moments, I know I have nothing to worry about.
I look forward to coming back and reading this a month from now, when my world is completely different, my perspective much greater, my purpose more defined.
I look forward to reading whatever it is I write once he’s here.
I can’t wait to meet him.
On Provision – Thoughts Before Parenthood