Thoughts from paternity leave

You’ve probably heard of “pregnancy brain” or “momnesia.” You know that forgetfulness and loss of razor sharp thinking so many moms (especially academics) experience with pregnancy. Well today I invented a phrase called the “paternity leave brain”. In my case it’s that fuzziness of mind that comes with trying to be a “stay at home dad” of 5, lacking sleep, cooking, cleaning, nursing a nursing mommy, handling staff issues at work (at an arms-length), writing, grading, teaching, and such. I know you are thinking “Andrew you are just crazy for having a big family like that…” and perhaps I am, but I am also crazy about the subject of fatherhood and family life, and as you can see, I’m getting all “ethnographic” about it. When people comment, “After four kids and a degree in that field, I guess you have everything under control,” I do my best to suppress a mischievous “cackle” (as my students would say) by simply responding with “I’m not sure ‘control’ is the right word but we are doing fine.”

It is hard to admit that most days I join the ranks of moms and dads who feel like they are “ruining their kids,” just to find out that I too am doing a pretty good job. Yes you can be a good parent even if you are a little distracted juggling so many things at once. I just wish I had that multitasking gene that my wife seems to have been born with.

During these last couple weeks I have been calling on my favorite two parenting tips: 1) I’m paying attention to what I want to see more of in my kids (noticing the good and rewarding with my attention), and 2) I’m actually being a bit more consistent and making a routine my new best friend, even though its not easy. And though I am a bit rusty at both, I have had more time than usual to practice and I can see truly how helpful they have been as a zookeeper of sort.

Yes, life keeps you a bit busy at times (especially with a tenure clock ticking), but hopefully not too busy to smell the roses and remember what you value most: family, relationships, and all that fun stuff that goes with those.


25 Responses to “Thoughts from paternity leave”

  1. rooms says:

    This is a good article. I am about to take more time looking into this issue.

  2. Hello, I love to find out more about this topic. I appreciate you for publishing this.

  3. Sherita Zeek says:

    I do not understand how to thanks, worked lots for me:)

  4. Nice posting. I liked reading this. If you want, check out my website.

  5. Nice posting in Thoughts from paternity leave Just In Time Parenting. I liked reading this. If you want, check out my website.

  6. Great job writing Thoughts from paternity leave Just In Time Parenting. I would like to read more about this subject.

  7. spel says:

    I like checking your blog posts, this page has been added to my bookmarks in firefox.

  8. I enjoy you taking the time to write this post. It is extremely beneficial to me in fact. Enjoy it.

  9. Hello there says:

    Many thanks…

    […]I discovered your blog site on google and check a few of your early articles. Consistently maintain the very good work. I just extra up your RSS feed to my MSN Information Reader. Seeking forward to reading more from you down the road! …[…]…

  10. See it for the first time!!…

  11. Micki Mearse says:

    More people need to read this and understand this aspect of the story. I cant believe you’re not more popular.Thanks !!!

  12. Hey! I’m at work surfing around your blog from my new iphone 3gs! Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to all your posts! Carry on the fantastic work!

  13. Catheryn says:

    It is definitely a terrific and helpful bit of information. I’m pleased that you just shared this convenient info along with us. Please stay up-to-date like this. Many thanks for sharing.

  14. yr0weiuo says:

    Great information…

    This is often amazing. American looked at all the group subject matter so we are startled. We’re attracted to this sort of anything. Only appreciate your regular suggestion, and number the effort inside this. Please keep enhancing. These are genuinely…

  15. Hi there, I found your blog by the use of Google while searching for a related topic, your site got here up, it seems great. I have added to my favourites|added to my bookmarks.

  16. Awesome job on this post.Take care !!!

  17. Dorthey says:

    Food truck economy:

  18. Therese says:

    We’re a categorize of volunteers and preparatory a new plot in our community. Your web position free us with helpful facts to work resting on. You have performed an impressive deal with and our full neighborhood shall ensue pleasing to you.|

  19. Florida says:

    It is correctly a fine and helpful cut of info. I’m joyful that you just common this helpful data with us. Please file us positive to date like this. Show appreciation you for sharing.

  20. Dusti says:

    I especially got into this article. I establish it to be motivating and loaded with inimitable points of interest. I in the vein of to recite pertinent that makes me reflect. Thank you for writing this abundant content.

  21. Hoa says:

    Very polite post. I merely found your weblog and wished to say which I’ve truly enjoyed browsing your blog posts. In almost any rationale I will ensue subscribing in your feed and I’m hoping you invent another time shortly!

  22. Marty Camlin says:

    Thank you for the good writeup. It in fact was a amusement account..

  23. Mireille Zabenko says:

    I am so thrilled I stumbled upon your site. I really found you by mistake, while I was browsing on Yahoo for something else. Anyways I am here now and would just like to say thank you for a informative post and an all round enjoyable blog. (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to read through it all at the moment, but I have added your website to my favorites, so when I have time I will be back to read more. Please do keep up the awesome job!

  24. Oh my goodness! Awesome article dude! Many thanks, However I am having difficulties with your RSS. I don’t know why I cannot join it. Is there anybody else having similar RSS problems? Anyone that knows the solution will you kindly respond? Thanks!