Calm Before the Baby | #216
February 25th, 2023: Greetings from Austin. Angie’s due date is next Friday so we are standing by. I’m planning on stepping away from most of my work for the month of March and have a number of amazing “guest hosts” who have agreed to take over this newsletter for the next several weeks. I think you’ll enjoy it.
The experience of being fully present in the week before you are about to have your first child is a weird one.
I know something is about to change but I don’t quite know what it will feel like.
The days have been slow and I’ve been able to take my time to appreciate the quiet.
People keep asking, “are you ready?”
My gut is that I’ve been ready for most of my adult life. I sense most of us could handle children. It’s just that when people talk about kids these days there are so many other things baked in. Work, money, education, daycare, and so on. But for the next few months, I’m not worried about any of that. Plenty of time to think about those questions later.
I feel ready because, over the past five years with Angie, we’ve lived in so many different ways, spent bountiful time with each other, and built a shared resilience with how we deal with the uncertainty of life. Part of my wanting to escape full-time employment was that I couldn’t see an exciting future for myself, let alone with a family. I think Angie felt the same too. The default path stifled our imagination.
Somehow, we’re making it work on our shared pathless path and I can’t wait to see what kind of possibilities emerge by adding children to the mix. I’ve obsessively built a “work” around opportunities where I would not have to trade time for a wage and where I could take off pretty much any day I wanted. Cashing in on the time freedom I’ve built will be amazing.
We will undoubtedly search for, find, and take interesting paths with how we raise our children. Already, we seem to be at a completely different starting point than most. Whereas most people are building their life downstream of one or two full-time careers, we aspire to build a life around two less-than-full-time careers.
We have no parental leave policy which is great because we don’t have to return to anyone else’s world. We can take things slow, pay attention, learn, and see what feels right on our schedule.
My initial plan is to be 95% off for a month and then experiment with how to fit work into our new life. I am trusting that answers will emerge through being present with Angie and my daughter. I’ve saved pretty aggressively in the past two years such that we don’t have to rush.
Keep going, keep learning, and see what works.
Over the past few months, I’ve been lucky to be the token not-yet-dad in a group chat with some less-than-employed creator dad friends. Most of them shared how in a counterintuitive way they were able to get more done in less time, or at least be more focused than before kids. I sense a similar thing will happen to me.
But that can wait. Right now I’m focused on how I can support Angie. Watching her go through pregnancy is a reminder that I’m the one kind of human that can’t produce life in my body. Watching her over the past nine months has been awe-inspiring and has given me a renewed appreciation for her. She has more love to give than I knew was possible in a human being and I am so lucky that I get to go through this journey with her and see her grow into her role as a mother.
I’m not sure which day this new chapter begins but I am ready. Let’s do this.
Boundless by Paul Millerd is a weekly free newsletter on Saturdays with occasionally paid content. If you’d like to “find the others” and join 100+ people carving their own paths, consider becoming a paid supporter for $20/month.
Thanks For Reading!
I am focused on building a life around exploring ideas, connecting and helping people, and writing. If you’d like to support my journey, the best ways are to:
Buy or listen to my book, The Pathless Path (or message me if you want to bulk order at a lower price)
I’m looking for sponsors for 2023 for this newsletter or podcast. Please reach out or book a package here directly.
Subscribe to my podcast and leave a review
Join Find The Others if you want to hang with like-hearted generous weirdos.
In addition, I recommend all of the following services (affiliate links): Riverside.fm for HD podcasting, Transistor for podcast hosting, Podia or Teachable for courses, Skystra for WordPress Hosting, and Circle for running a community
A reminder: I don’t check unsubscribe alerts and never look at my subscriber list. So if you feel like unsubscribing, you can do so below.