Dedicated to some of my favourite new parents (in chronological order!) Roopal & Dinesh, Burzin, Kamal, Madhavi, Zeth & Shahrukh.
Some of my dearest colleagues and young friends have just become new parents. As one who is an old hand at this (literally and figuratively) from time to time they turn to tell me or ask me about their ongoing trials and tribulations with a tiny little thing that is suddenly ruling their lives (for most of the guys, it was earlier their cellphone or PS2!).
The other day an anxious colleague harrowed by sleepless nights asked me, “When does it end?” I tried being diplomatic and reassured him but I was myself not convinced with my answer.
That night, I tossed and turned and realized that it never does end.
Becoming a parent changes your life. It changes your days. But more importantly it changes your nights! But then, in my mind, it’s all worth it.
So here’s my advice to my young friends and new parents.
Remember the time you excitedly partied the night away and crept home only to be discovered by the milkman?
Remember the time you stayed over at a friend’s place and chatted in the darkness and didn’t realize it till the first rays of the sun peeped through the window?
Remember the time early in your career you worked all night with an adrenaline high for an important assignment and viewed with bleary-eyed satisfaction your handiwork in the early hours of the morning?
The time you went out of town with friends on a night train and sang through the pitch darkness much to the irritation of the neighbouring gentleman?
Those moonlit walks on the beach as you strolled hand in hand with your beloved not wanting to lose out on even a moment of togetherness?
Now’s the time you can really proclaim yourselves as creatures of the night, night birds, owls… Now’s the time to live that nightlife all over again.
Now’s the time to think of all those happy times as you jump out of bed at the first sound of an urgent wail.
Now’s the time to party at 3:30 am when your little one gives you one of her most gorgeous smiles.
Now’s the time to chat, even though the response may be just a incomprehensible gurgle.
Now’s the time to work, whether it’s warming the milk to the right temperature (test it on the back of your hand, dear) or changing that (smelly) diaper
Now’s the time to sing (of course, lullabies) and be heard with admiration, for once!
Now is the time to walk… pace up and down… for seemingly long hours… till the tiny little bundle you are holding gently drops off to sleep.
And then in the quiet of the night you look at that angelic face and you feel of all the nights that you spent awake, wasn’t this the one night that was worth staying up for?
Déjà vu, anyone?