Of birthdays and blogging

So I’m the father of a one-year-old boy. How did that happen and where did the last year go? We’ve been celebrating Dylan’s first birthday for the last couple of days. While he was blissfully oblivious as to the reason for all the fuss and sudden appearance of his grandparents, uncles, aunty and cousin at once, he seemed to enjoy the occasion.

He was suitably intrigued by all of his gifts and very interested in the baby-friendly cake we had made. He grabbed a chunk of it before we had a chance to cut him a modest slice – he must have known of our evil portion control plans.

For Kate and me, it was a really odd experience. We were, of course, happy that Dylan was enjoying his first birthday and he fully deserved all of it for being such a wonderful little lad. But there was also an element of sadness that the year had gone by so quickly.

In some ways, I think we both want him to remain this age forever. Then again we’re really looking forward to him walking and talking among a great many other things and I suppose a lot has happened since our little man was born.

Looking back at my blog posts over the last year, I have compared him to, among others: a Smurf, Mr Bean, an emo, Dr Evil, Looney Tunes’ Taz, the off-screen teacher in the Peanuts cartoons, Austin Powers, Stig of the Dump, Gollum, a cat, Billy Elliot, Spider-man, a narcissist and a wagon load of monkeys. Yes, not all of them – okay, okay, not many of them – come across as flattering, but even the reference to Gollum was written with love.

For my part, I’ve shared my inadequacies in the fields of DIY, gardening and reading classics. I’ve also compared myself to a zombie and one of Harry Enfield’s Old Gits. In addition, I confessed to a shocking act of violence against an outdoor ornament – so I think that redresses the balance somewhat.

Going through the gargantuan amount of waffle I have written since I started blogging has brought back a lot of happy memories. I’m really glad I started. It’s also made me realise how much becoming a dad has changed me.

I’ve become a lot more responsible, less self-indulgent and definitely more patient. I used to get irritated by things quite easily. The disparity between dialogue and sound effects in films was always a thorny issue, for example.

So Dylan has taught me a lot. At the risk of sounding over-sentimental and/or pretentious, being a dad is a gift that keeps on giving and so is blogging, come to think of it. Cheers, Dylan!


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