DENVER — Just like that, my baby is 1 year old. I got misty when our closest family and friends were singing her "happy birthday" as she sat on her throne with a big piece of cake in front of her during her birthday party.
Wow, she sure loves her sweets. She ate the whole piece of cake and paid for it, too. She had a tummy ache all night, but it was worth it.
After the party when everything calmed down, I had some time to reflect on the past year. Everyone is right...time really does fly.
It's been quite eventful. Actually, let me clarify. My personal life has NOT been eventful at all. I have been to one movie in 12 months. I got to play a round of golf...once. I'm pretty sure my friends have given up even asking me to do anything fun. Parenthood is a full-time gig, that's for sure.
Aria didn't start sleeping through the night until literally a few weeks ago. For the first six months or so, she was up three times a night. It was worse for Tiffany because daddy doesn't have any food supply handy so Aria didn't really care too much when I would go into the room and try to soothe her.
I never really understood how many diapers I would have to change. I have easily changed more than a hundred with a lot of gagging in the process.
Enough of the bad stuff, right?
I have absolutely loved witnessing Aria reach her little milestones. First, it was her cooing, then her first laugh, her first babble. I loved watching her reaction to her first solid food.
She took her time crawling. That started at 11 months. We're still working on getting her to walk. We're not worried about it. We will be entering a whole new realm once we get into the walking phase.
Aria loves to give hugs which just melts my heart. Her personality is really starting to shine now. The level of love I have for her is truly unmatched.
First, there's the love for your parents. It takes hold quick and it's strong. Then there's the kind of love for your closest family and friends. A new love is introduced when you meet the girl of your dreams and marry her. But then there's the love of your child. That love I still can't describe. It is unmatched. Aria is always on my mind. It doesn't matter what I am doing or where I am. There is a level of obsession that I honestly can't explain.
This new level of love can be scary, too. Yes, I'm going to get serious for a second. I will admit I am more scared of death than ever before. I am afraid to leave this earth too early. I don't want to miss my daughter growing. Sometimes I get irrational with thoughts of death. Without doing any deep research I've come to the conclusion that kind of thinking is typical...to a point. If I'm wrong and you're worried about me, you can always send me a message.
If you have followed my journey to fatherhood then you would know it hasn't been easy. My wife endured two miscarriages and had some scares with Aria too, before she was born.
The struggles we had shed a whole new light on parenthood for us. So many people in this world can't have children. I can't imagine that level of heartbreak. That is why I will never take being a daddy for granted. I will cherish it. I will never forget just what a blessing it is.
Here's to one year with my precious baby. Bring on another.