Blood In Blood Out
Parenting, and warring, in Clown World.
I celebrated my first Father's Day this year.
It still seems surreal to me that I'm a dad—and that I've got another little one on the way. Every day is a blessing and a gift in the most fundamental sense.
I'll never forget how it felt when first seeing my son. It started slowly, subtly, then swelled the crescendo in my heart of love, hope, humility, joy, fear, and gratitude. It was like feeling my heartbeat for the first time, like there was a great wind that swept my back, lifting me off my feet as I looked down at this tiny, precious boy.
My father taught me how not to parent, and I was a difficult son. I'll leave it at that. But I'm grateful for everything he did, thankful for the good and bad lessons I learned from him. As cliché as it sounds, kids really do give us an opportunity to be our best selves. Maybe one reason why that sounds so cliché is that it understandably reeks of self-help, raising kids to gratify our individualistic needs and desire instead of being the parents we had or wish we had. In the context of the current year, having a "trans kid" is like having a Gucci handbag—it is a testament to your best self as an enlightened ally. It's also an especially psychotic form of child abuse. Parents have a duty to protect and nurture their children; endowing them with neurosis or some pathology from the earliest age possible is a crime.