As a way to celebrate this past 3 years, I have collected these videos of you, which I think do a good job of showing your life, as documented, here on The Dadabase.
I am so grateful and thankful for the staff of Parents.com choosing me to begin with to be their official daddy blogger; not to mention, for keeping me around through all the learning curves I’ve been taught by immersion.
Now with 1,018 posts published since 2011 on their site, the folks at Parents.com have given me major credibility to my “aspirations to be a writer” from when I started regularly blogging back in 2005.
While today definitely serves as an ending, the series finale, it also serves as the doorway to where our family goes from here.
This is simply the last Dadabase post, not the last post from Nick Shell to his son. I’ve got plenty more to say as a writer and as a parent!
Our family will continue living our lives, documented in blog form as I’ve been doing since the day Mommy and I went public with her being pregnant with you: at Family Friendly Daddy Blog.
For those following me on The Dadabase’s Facebook page, I plan to transition the name over within the next couple of weeks once readers are used to the name change.
So now that we’ve had a chance to look back and celebrate how far we’ve come in these past three years since May 2011, let’s look to where we are going at this point…
I have learned that there are certain things that are just so much better once a child is introduced to the equation.
Swimming would be a great example. The only times I’ve bothered stepping into a swimming pool in the past 3 and a half years has been because of you.
Having a child has also introduced me to new experiences that I might not have otherwise been exposed to.
When I was invited to attend the Wizard World Atlanta Comic Con, to my surprise, Mommy said she wanted to go too, and of course, we brought you along as well.
Turns out, it was a really good idea to take a 3 and a half year-old little boy who loves Spiderman and Captain America to a place where there would be a lot of people, many of them who were dressed up as Spiderman and Captain America.
So we loaded up the Prius and took the fun drive from Nashville to Atlanta. When you’re in the presence of so many adults dressed in impressive costumes of comic book characters, it’s only natural to want to get your picture made with them.
In fact, I got the feeling that’s part of the culture at Wizard World Comic Atlanta Con: It’s as if there is an unspoken contest going on the whole time in which those who show up in costume are seeing who can get the most “uncostumed” people to ask to get their picture made with him.
And of course, we helped many costumed attendees gain points from us.
In addition to the array of Captain Americas and Spidermen, we also saw many scary looking villains and zombies. The funny thing is, they were some of the friendliest to speak with.
You just went along with it, no matter how scary or creepy; Mommy and I explained to you beforehand that the Wizard World Atlanta Comic Con was kind of like Halloween.
It was three years ago today that with great excitment, I saw my WordPress daddy blog, Dad From Day One, get rebooted and placed on a much broader stage, as The Dadabase on Parents.com.
Just for fun, I decided to go back and read the very first official Dadabase post, entitled, “Welcome To The Dadabase.”
Yeah, about that…
I do think I made some good points in that post, as I made it clear men think differently than women and that one of my objectives was to positively rebrand fatherhood despite all the classic sitcom cliches of idiot dads and husbands.
However, I feel like I was pretty cheesy about it:
I am a guy, so I don’t do “cute.” I do practical. With the name of this daddy blog, I wanted to allude to the idea that a man’s perspective of parenting is a bit offbeat when compared to the more easily recognizable viewpoint of the beautiful and poetic female mind. So for you moms out there who wonder what your hubby is really thinking about this whole dad thing, I might be able to shed some light on the subject. Granted, I’m not claiming to represent all or even most husbands and fathers, but I’m sure I will often hit close to “the dadabase.”
Wow. I must have really thought I was clever or something. Of course, that was back when you were only 6 months old and I was still writing to a social media audience, instead of you directly. That narrative change didn’t occur until your 2nd birthday, which I definitely think improved my writing style as a daddy blogger.
For me, it’s so much more natural and real to write about parenting when it’s to the very kid who is the reason I am a parent; if that makes sense.
I also had to laugh when I read my unofficial disclaimer from my first Dadabase post:
Sometimes, you will totally agree with my opinions and my take on fatherhood- you will appreciate what I have served up that morning for “blogfast” (note to self: copyright the destined-to-be-trendy word, “blogfast”) and you will “like” it on Facebook, and/or Tweet it. Other times, you may feel I am so quirky that I’m kooky; disagreeing with my “wrong opinion” so much that you throw your shoe at your computer screen. In either case, I’m still the same guy you either liked or didn’t like the day before.
But here’s the thing. While I see the 2011 version of myself as a bit of a cornball, I am very mindful of the fact that there’s a very decent chance that 3 years from now, I’ll be saying the same thing about the 2014 version of me.
When I decided to become the first daddy blogger in history to write at least once every week about his kid, starting from the day he went public with the info of the pregnancy, I didn’t consider at what point it would finally come to an end.
And now, over three years into doing this on a nearly daily basis, I plan to set and hold the world record for “Longest Running And Most Consistent Daddy Blog Ever.”
By default. I simply can’t imagine not writing to you nearly every day.
But this daddy blog of mine technically isn’t about you… or me.
Actually, it’s more about the love of a father for his son. It’s a documentation of the mutual respect in that relationship, both individually and mutually.
I want to know what that looks like on paper… or a computer screen… or a smart phone. I want to share whatever that message is with anyone who is as curious as I am about it.
Perhaps I should make it seem like I plan my letters to you weeks in advance. I don’t.
Most days, I only figure out what I’m going to write about earlier that day. That’s part of the thrill and the motivation for me: There’s always something intriguing to write about, concerning you. It’s fun to assess what’s really going on with us. I like figuring out what the plot line for that day is.
The funny thing is, too, I actually regret many of the blog posts I’ve written over the past three years. To be too honest, I am actually pretty ashamed of several of them.
It’s only because I can see how being a father has forced me to mature in my words and attitude. It’s forced me to major in humility and grace.
Last week I saw a comic book clip from The Joyful Noiseletter by Doc Goodwin on somebody’s Facebook wall, where a little boy prays, “God, make me like my daddy- big and strong and smart.”
The father then goes to his own bedroom and prays, “Lord, make me like my child- obedient, faithful, and trusting.”
Just like us: We learn from each other. That’s beautiful.
But as for The Dadabase, it’s a dangerous, humbling, and vulnerable thing to broadcast our story of father and son across the Internet for the whole world to see.
What if I make myself seem like I don’t know what I’m talking about?
What if I change my mind about how I perceive things, compared to a few months ago?
What if I embarrass myself by something I say?
I already have. At least once every two months- in my mind, if nothing else.
And I’ve learned to embrace those moments. I’ve learned the importance of finding value in the fact that without that necessary growth as a human being, I wouldn’t be experiencing fatherhood.
So, no- I honestly have no plans of retiring from daddy blogging. Ever.
Even when you’re an adult. As long as I am your dad, I plan to keep you informed of what life is like… this side of Jack.
P.S. This is my 755th daddy blog post- in case you’re curious.