There was a recent episode of How I Met Your Mother that struck a chord: It dealt with the fact that no matter how mature and established your friends are when they’re about to become parents, you can’t help but picture all the wacky things they’ve done in their past that, had that behavior continued, would disqualify them from being good role models, let alone semi-responsible moms and dads. This never felt truer than this past Saturday night.
We got together with Paul’s friends and their wife and fiancée. I was standing with the women in the kitchen when one asked, “So, who’s going to be the first to get knocked up?” After we looked around to see who would speak first, I volunteered. Considering I had been married the longest (four years last Thursday!), I suggested it might be me. I admitted that we were considering trying for a kid in 2013.
But actually, this meant I’d likely be the last of the trio to get pregnant. In fact, I learned that one of the guys is really, really excited about becoming a dad–sooner rather than later.
Instantly, my mind flashed to a college memory. Paul shared a tiny room with both these men, and one night every other weekend, so did I. One day, I arrived at their school around 5 p.m. on a Friday–just in time for one of the guys to wake up after going to bed around 7 a.m. that morning. He had dozed through his classes, as he did many days that semester in favor of late-night video game marathons, which obviously had serious consequences.
That was 10 years ago. A lot’s changed since then.
Now, he’s a successful 30-year-old, one who’s positively giddy with excitement about raising a child. While I’m jealous that Paul and I don’t share his enthusiasm for starting a family ASAP, it’s amazing to have witnessed his evolution.
When Paul and I tell people we’re ready to have kids, no doubt, they’ll recall some of our less-responsible choices, like the time 13-year-old Paul and I took a 3-mile-walk home at night past a prison. Or the occasions in college when Paul jousted with crutches while wearing soda-can-box armor.
What’s the least responsible thing a friend of yours did before s/he decided to become a parent? What memory do you think will flood your friends’ heads when you announce you’re ready for a baby?
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Photo by Catherine Scott