A follow up to this... this one is partly for @wendybr who asked how being a dad was (in the Car Thread ).
My son turned one a few weeks ago. Fatherhood has been somewhat what I expected: amazing, challenging, full of love and stress all at the same time. He's a great little kid who is happy and healthy and a tornado of energy. He keeps us on our toes. I'm just grateful he's healthy, growing well and doing all the things he should be (and plenty he shouldn't! )
I was pretty daunted about having a boy, due to my strained relationship with my dad at times. He was a good man, but had a terrible father role model and struggled with showing affection at times. I know deep down he loved me, but we only really rekindled our relationship in my twenties. It was equal parts him and me though, moody teenagers aren't easy to deal with after all. But so far its been pretty good having our little man. I have moments where I get over stressed or lose my cool, and hate myself for it, but I'm trying to at least recognise, acknowledge and apologise for my behaviour to him and my partner. The joys of anxiety. I lose control and then hate myself for it. I must say it doesn't happen often, but it's something I need to keep working on. Most of the time it's good, we can be silly together and play and sing songs and do all the fun stuff. Part of fatherhood is getting to do lots of kid stuff all over again - I could probably do with a bit less Wiggles on repeat, but it is what it is.
I'm going part time with work next year and will be looking after him two days a week, which I am really looking forward to. Both from a parenting perspective, but also to take a bit of a step back from work, which is simply a job and a means to earn a living to me now. I was fortunate that work were accepting of my proposal to go part time, and my partner is more than happy to work full time as she loves working and her job.
Juggling fatherhood, work and a pandemic has been an interesting ride. Life definitely hasn't gotten easier, its tough. But in many ways much more satisfying too. The stress and anxiety hasn't gone away, and with a kid the responsibility is just never ending, but he puts a smile on my face every day, and I know there are plenty of people in much worse circumstances, so I am happy for what I have. We enjoy watching him grow and develop. It's amazing how much of his personality is already built in on day one! I can see a lot of me in him, for better or worse!