I recently saw someone I follow on twitter proudly introduce a gorgeous babygirl to the world. He was so proud. It naturally made me think of my own girls at that age. Soft and sweet, totally unaware of the world they had been born into. This person covers national security and counterintelligence. No, I won’t give you his name, that was his moment.
Most of the time this man gives us the ugly truth about American foreign policy. All it’s flaws and fleeting dreams of peace. But he stopped. What could stop a man so obsessed? Well, a baby. He, like I did, relished in the moment. Forgive me while I waxpoetic, but his baby and my own, reminded me of why the US goes to great links to stop extremist. We currently do little to prevent atrocities abroad, but how quickly our reluctancy to act would fade if our own babies were subjected to what’s being done throughout central Iraq and most of Syria — not to mention a half-a-dozen other places around the globe. How quickly non-interventionism would go out of vogue.
It hit me. People strive to protect those who can’t protect themselves. As much as we’d like to believe in an invincible American military machine, it has it’s limits. Which is why we must become smarter, more innovative, and more resilient than those who would see our nation collapse to it’s knees. Leaving our new babies to face a real war we avoided. We must adapt rapidly, something every new father experiences. You have to adapt and develop a way to cope and be an asset to the women who just delivered your child. Because let’s cut the shit, you’re useless when a new baby comes, as a man for a while. Sure, you can help, but you aren’t equipped to to meet the child’s needs at the first sign of a whimper. You can be supportive and there for your new family, but you just don’t have the gear to completely care for this new life. It’s not a detraction, just a fact.
It’s so rare that these streams cross; national security and beautiful new babies. But they did. I’m glad they did. It gave me a weird sense of a renewed purpose. It remined me that I once adapted to a situation I was completely ill-equipped to handle, but I dug my heels in and wouldn’t quit. Perhaps I have more of that in me, then again, perhaps rising to the occasion of fatherhood, will be my greatest accomplishment in life. I’d like to be more, do more, contribute more. However, if all I ever become is a good dad, I have done something. I have lived. I have loved. I gave something that I didn’t know I had.
And that is the secret, redemptive qualities of a child. They hold a magic all their own. It’s an amazingly beautiful thing. Let’s hope it keeps happening.
Editor’s update: we over look disturbing baseball affiliations when celebrating a new baby.