I used to be a morning radio host that liked to “live his life” on the radio. So whenever something big was happening, it usually found its way on air. One of the segments I distinctly remember was discussing the pace of life for men. The premise was that life slows down drastically the “less single” you became. It basically broke down like this.
Single guy, no kids
Going to the ball game: ‘Hey, there’s a ball game today. I think I’ll go.’ Check the time. Starts in 30 minutes. Throw a ball cap on. Grab the wallet and keys and drive to the park. Enjoy hot dog, beer, sunshine. Go, team.
Dating guy, getting serious, still no kids
Going to the ball game: ‘Hey, there’s a ball game today. I think I’ll go… Honey? Are we doing anything this afternoon?’ Pray that there isn’t a planned but forgotten shopping trip for furniture. Get the go ahead. Check the time. Starts in 20 minutes. Throw a ball cap on. Wait for sweetheart to get ready. Wait a little more. Grab the wallet, keys, and drive. Wait in the parking lot for last second application of lipstick. Enter during second inning. Enjoy two hot dogs, two beers, sunshine. Go, team.
Married guy, with kid(s)
Going to the ball game: ‘Hey, there’s a ball game today. I think I’ll go…Honey? Are we doing anything this afternoon? Clearance. When does the game start? Does it fall during nap time? Clearance, again. Check the time. Starts in 10 minutes. Throw a ball cap on. Wait for wife to get ready. Wait a little more and while waiting…pack diaper bag with snacks, diaper, bottle, change of clothes, etc. Pack the car. Pack the toddler. Drive. Forgot wallet. Head back and grab it. Drive again. Wait in parking lot for lipstick application and then unpack the car. Enter in time for the seventh inning stretch. Slam a beer. Comfort the unhappy toddler. Leave in the eighth inning and listen to the game on the radio. Go, team?
While the above scenario is embellished (slightly) for entertainment purposes, the crux of the conversation is that the pace of a man with wife and child slows down dramatically. Boy, was I wrong… sort of.
The cliché is to enjoy fatherhood because “before you know it, they’re all grown up” and that time flies so fast. That is partially true.
Here’s the whole truth. When you get married and have kids, your ‘pace of life’ may slow down ( I start things 45 minutes in advance these days just to make sure I’m on time and I’m a single Dad) but your ‘speed of life’ never changes. Your perspective does.
It’s not that time flies by faster, it’s just that someone else’s time has become more important than your own so you don’t notice your own time passing so much.
Besides, who needs a baseball game when I get impromptu dance recitals, fort building, and tickle fights? Go, family.