It almost feels trite to be in your 30's and to proclaim “it’s amazing how time flies”, but this unfortunately becomes all too true when you become a father.
In quiet reflection yesterday morning over my morning coffee (and a few minutes of rare solitude sitting in the trusty minivan outside the school drop off zone) I took a second to notice the date and realize that it had been exactly one year since a pretty momentous turning point in my life.
This blog post could be 60 pages, but you will likely be long gone into your favourite Instagram stories if I let verbosity take over, so I will do my best to tell this story as succinctly and directly as possible.
Admitting weakness or otherwise feeling vulnerable is incredibly, incredibly hard.
Telling yourself (or anyone who listens) that you are anything other than a physically and mentally strong, diaper changing, cheese noodle making, home maintaining, earning, family raising machine is the fatherhood equivalent to admitting to the prettiest girl in your 7th grade class that they made your Spiderman Underoos feel all tingly.
I personally was faced with this reality on February 27th of 2017, and I for the first time ever did not have a choice.
We are all inundated with PSAs and other reminders to be on top of our physical health. Put down the cigarette. Get off the couch. Wrap up your salami. Call your doctor if your erection doesn’t subsist for more than five hours. Check your sack for lumps. It’s so easy to get lost in the things you should be doing because of all of the things that you are already doing.
On this fateful evening, my kids were asleep and I was fortunate to engage in some recreation of ancient Olympic Greco roman wrestling with my wife. Afterwards, I was absent mindedly getting my Al Bundy on when I noticed something immediately terrifying. I had a bump on my testicle.
I FREAKED out! 9PM on a Monday night is not the time to discover this, when you’re two months removed from losing your father unexpectedly, 2 months post 3rd child under 4, juggling a full time job, and a 60% university course load on the side. The wheels fell off.
I’ve always been a fairly high strung person who is involved in as many things as possible and helping as many people as possible, but I managed it well because I work well under pressure and it is the right thing to do.
But reeling from the loss of my father I was feeling overwhelmed with life. I lost my ability to feel in control for the first time ever, and had my first full blown panic attack. Chest tightness, sweating, restlessness, clammy skin, dizzy, nauseous, can’t breathe properly, the works. Luckily I knew I was healthy enough and had enough awareness of the presenting circum