My top fatherhood lessons, 12 years i1. Start it right; be in the delivery room.
Carry a bottle of patience & fortitude. Warning: whatever happens in the delivery room doesn’t stay in the delivery room. This is not Vegas.
2. Losing teeth is a big deal for children. It’s their first real loss before they start losing friends, money, hair, trust & their knees. The going rate for the tooth fairy is about 100 bob, now much lower because of Covid; 50 bob would be my best bet. Because everybody has to take a pay cut.
3. Tip; don’t smell the tooth from your child’s mouth. It smells like hydrogen sulfide. And it’s flammable.
4. Take a knee and tie your child’s shoe laces as they hold the crown of your head for balance. You will never forget that. It’s more fulfilling than driving a stick shift.
5. There is a pill that you insert in a baby’s anus to lower their body temperature. Nobody can prepare you for that. Fatherhood is dirty, man.
6. One day they will never remember that you paid fees or put a good roof over their heads. But they will – for some reason – remember when you all sat on a bench in Karura forest & listened to silence.
7. Don’t normalise farting before your kids.
8. But if it comes out by mistake just say “excuse me. My apologies, dear village mates.”
9. On Valentine’s Day I dropped off a card and chocolate for Tamms in school. It was very selfish; I’m just trying to make it very difficult for the next man.
10. Buy them books. Lots of books. Whenever they say, “I’m starving, I want food!” Tell them, “Read a book, it will fill you.”
11. Children are always eating. Always.
12. You aren’t inducted until one day, in the supermarket, suddenly you turn around and you can’t find the little one. If ever you are asked to define what terror is, describe this moment.
13. You are not a bad father because you lost a child in a supermarket. You are just a guy who got distracted by bright new cereal boxes.
14. We have no time. We have only a good 12 years then they become people we used to know.
A toast to all the other men fumbling on this journey. Happy Father’s Day.