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A short list of my joys as a parent

I find myself commiserating with a co-worker on a regular basis who's daughter is just a few months younger than The Kid.  We're both in the cutting teeth phase, so one of us is usually exhausted from another night of getting up in the middle of the night to soothe a baby in pain.  When Gladys was out of town and The Kid had three blowout diapers in two days, my co-worker was the one person on our team who knew exactly what I was going through.  

The problem with this is our childless co-workers will overhear these stories, leading them to declare that listening to us makes them glad they don't have kids.  So here is a short list of why being a father is the most incredible, humbling, heartwarming experience of my life.
  • When I pick The Kid up from daycare, watching her drop everything and run to me is great, as is the bear hug I get when she reaches me.
  • Watching her sit up at the table in her room to read a book like Mommy reads to her.
  • Having to read six stories because three just wasn't enough.
  • Listening to her happily singing each morning on our way to daycare.
  • Watching her try to whistle after listening to me whistle the little tune my Grandfather used to whistle.
  • Spontaneous dancing while she's strapped to my back for our family walks.
  • The first smile of the morning.
  • Having her run toward me when I yell I'm going to catch the baby.
  • Her two-handed kiss blowing technique.
  • Watching The Kid study something for the first time, like a new toy or a new stuffed animal, to see exactly how it works.
  • Watching her try to hand Barney his dog toy because she hasn't learned to throw them yet.
  • Our dinner conversations about nothing.  
  • Watching her eat plain Greek yogurt, which is almost as cute as watching her try baba ghanouj because she saw her parents eating it.  Which is almost as cute as her trying to eat my Popsicles. 
  • Hearing her laugh of pure joy.
  • Her habit of waving goodbye after people leave is priceless.
  • Knowing that when she doesn't feel good, cuddling with Papa is a good way to feel better.

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