The Lily Cafe is delighted to present The Husband in the first of a 5 part series on fatherhood.
Biochemical reactions are constantly occurring inside our bodies. Disturbance in these biochemical processes is an important part of life – as likely without disturbance there would likely be no life as we know it.
For example, when looking at things from the cellular perspective, the contact made by proteins on the cell surface of the sperm and egg trigger a violent chemical reaction that prevents all other sperm from entering that egg. Simultaneously, sperm entry into the egg triggers the biochemical reactions that drives cell division – and the beginning of a new, and potentially viable, very early embryo.
Being a father, or dad, or whatever “title” is given these days when one has children to take care of, significantly alters the way in which one approaches the world, life, the universe (paying homage to Douglas Adams) and everything in between.
I read some posts about the difference between “dad” and “father” and the apparent divergence in definition between these words. Apparently, “a dad is present” while “father is a biological sperm donor.” We’ll get back to this one in a bit. Additionally, being curious at the definition of a “good father/dad,” I also researched to see if I even met those criteria – I fell short in some if not many of these criteria.
Having read all of these opinions, I can see some of the many perspectives that people provide about what they believe to be the ultimate definition of “dad” or “father” and what, exactly, is a good one.
I’m going to avoid falling into this gambit and just attempt to relate to all as a parent. Personally, I don’t subscribe to titles because circumstances can dictate how we conduct ourselves in our lives. And it is there, how we conduct ourselves, in those choices that we make, in those circumstances, whether they be difficult or not, is what I think begins to define the very complex nature of being a parent.
For me, most of my existence has revolved around a single entity – science. Having lacked a positive male role model during my early through young adult developmental period – I devoted my existence to understanding life from a very fundamental level. This path, one that I truly love, has asked a lot of me in terms of time, commitment, and soul. Of these I think time is the one that is the most valuable – because let’s be honest, you NEVER get it back when it is gone. I love this path so much that I have been doing it for almost 20 years. I have to admit that my view of the world has changed since becoming a parent and it has affected many choices that I have made along the way.
Now, with each day, I try to reach a balance. Sometimes I fail and other times, it’s great. This disturbance (which is a terrible word with terrible connotations, which is not what is intended) compels me to attempt to reach equilibrium. This is a tremendous challenge that I readily accept. Complicating things more, being a parent is now juxtaposed with being a scientist and a husband – though there is no contest with regard to which is more important and is first on the list. I’ll let you try and figure this one out as I proceed (Hehe!). I’ll continue this exploration next time – same bat time and same bat channel.