Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Base Camp - Day 1000

Each morning during my commute to my Seattle job I glance at least once to my Southeast and revel in the majestic glory that is Washington's Mount Rainier. Imposing and impressive, it dominates the southern skyline. Its peaks have been especially glorious on recent spring mornings with the rising sun framing this enormous snow-capped mountain in all of its natural beauty and wonder.

On many such mornings, I find myself daydreaming. Daydreaming of how amazing it would be to someday climb that imposing, wondrous mountain. To once and for all stand on it's summit and take in the breathtaking scenery that such an accomplishment would undoubtedly sear into the deepest reaches of my memory.

How would I accomplish this feat? One step at a time, of course.

If the whole of raising children from infancy to adulthood can be considered an equally imposing Mountain, then today, after climbing one step at a time since my son Lukas' birth, I have finally made it to...base camp.

1000 days. 1000 steps.

Not unlike climbing a literal mountain, climbing the figurative mountain of parenthood for me, as well as for Mrs. LIAYF, has been accomplished by putting one foot in front of the other.

At times the climbing has been easy and invigorating, while others it has been slowed by obstacles in our path. Obstacles, the likes of which have at times made us feel like turning back, or at the very least sitting and telling ourselves that we've reached our limit and can't possibly go further.

But arriving here at base camp, at day 1000 with my amazing little guy, the view is already so unbelievably incredible that it understandably challenges my meager ability to describe its natural and emotional wonder.

My son is a truly amazing little person. His daily accomplishments, goofy antics, revelations, and acts of compassion fill my heart with a love the likes of which I had no idea I had the capacity to possess before his birth. Each of these days is its own amazing gift to me.

I know that to reach that summit and gaze back at the incredible path that led me there - to plant my personal flag on the peak which constitutes Lukas' childhood with his mother and I - that there will be uncountable steps yet to be taken.

Steps that will be some of the most difficult that I will have ever taken. That I will likely encounter storms along the way which will test my endurance to its limits.

I will deal with those steps with the same approach my lovely wife and I have used to deal with the previous 1000. Taking them one at a time.

Taking immense pleasure in putting one foot in front of the last and appreciating the spectacular beauty that each one affords along the way.

Happy 1000th day in this world son.


ericdbolton said...

Geesh... Imagine the size of my mountain with five kids.

Steve said...

The view is indeed wonderful and we are still only in the foothills. Here's hoping for clear days for the rest of the hike.

James (SeattleDad) said...

@Eric - You have the whole Himalayas to climb

@Steve - Yeah, maybe I am more in the foothills as well. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

My son is two and a half years old, and I'm already suffering from altitude sickness!

Enjoy your blog very much!

OneZenMom said...

"Taking immense pleasure in putting one foot in front of the last and appreciating the spectacular beauty that each one affords along the way."


WeaselMomma said...

I am sure that any picture can not do the view justice.

Happy 1000 days.

Lady Mama said...

Lovely post! It certainly is an amazing journey, parenting. I'd say climbing a mountain is nothing in comparison to be a parent though (having climbed a very small one!). That is a great picture of the three of you.

p.s. how the heck did you figure out it was 1000 days?

Surfer Jay said...

1000 days! Dang dude.

Wonder how many diapers that is...

Cheryl said...

I believe the diaper count is somewhere between 6 and 8000.
Great post!

OWTK said...

Beautiful post! I think we're better dads/parents for being so reflective. This blogging thing kinda helps in that dept. doesn't it?

Anonymous said...

Very picturesque view of it all. Parenting is a job where your in it for the very long haul and will be until the day you die.
It's good to be reminded to take 1 day, 1 step at a time and enjoy it all for all that it's worth. You won't get that day back and you can't go backwards, you have to press on to the next step.
I guess the prize or the top of the mountain is the day they set off on their own and begin their own parenting journey and it's at that point you can look down from the mountain top and remember the long journey it took you to get there and be there to help guide them up their own mountain.

Chris Singer said...

Beautiful post! Happy 1000th Day!

Whit said...

1000 days! Congrats!

Being us... said...

great post!!! Can't wait to get to that point too!

Anonymous said...

Great post. Loved the metaphor. As one who has actually climbed Mt. Ranier, I would only offer you the following...raising children is a hell of a lot harder. Congrats on getting to base camp. We're right behind you. Have some warm food waiting, will you?

EdathomeDad said...

It's a great journey to be on. Beautifully written post.

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Header is cool!

But Wow! What a lovely post and analogy :)

Anonymous said...

That is great way to describe the journey of parenting. You've both come so far, with even further left to go.

Dig the new banner BTW.

If I Could Escape . . . said...

What a wonderful analogy! Well done!

And, I agree Mount Ranier is truly majestic. My sons tasted snow for the very first time from that mountain! Don't worry -- it wasn't yellow! Would love to go back to visit one of these days!

Jack Steiner said...

Something tells me that you are going to be just fine.

Anonymous said...

Love it dude. Great read. You know... my sister has TWELVE kids! I don't think she's ever going to be able to plant her flag anywhere.

Also... like the new banner alot.

James (SeattleDad) said...

@bkwakeling - We need to pack extra oxygen for the final ascent.

@Zenmom - Thanks, I appreciate that.

Weaselmomma - Thanks so much.

Lady Mama - Thanks, there is a day to day calculator out there. DM me and I will send it to you.

@Jay - A lot man. A lot!

@Cheyrl - Wow, really? At least we are going in the right direction.

@Jeff - Yes, it certainly has for me. Thanks for stopping by.

@Chris - The journey has been terrific for me. Really has.

@Chis - Thanks.

@Whit - Yeah, you must be double that soon, right?

@Being Us - Thanks. You are right behind.

@JCO - I keep forgetting that you have done that. I will have warm food and a beer stuck in the snow for you.

@Edathome - Thanks. And glad you were able to stop by.

@Shelle - That means a lot. Thanks.

@PJ - Yes, a long way yet but it should be fun. Thanks.

@Karen - We are right here and I have not actually been there since I was Lukas' age, believe it or not.

@Jack - Thanks. I hope so.

@Handstowar - 12? Wow, that in INCONCEIVABLE! Well, not really I guess.

Irrational Dad said...

Strange that you didn't put your age, in days, as well.... you know, for comparison.

I'll have to look up that calculator so I can see when my little guy hits that milestone.

Keith Wilcox said...

Raising kids feels like that. Comparing it to climbing a mountain seems about right. It's hard work, but it's beautiful and it rewarding when you're finished. Your become stronger, more experience and confident. In fact, it's just like climbing a mountain except it's an 18 year mountain :-)

I've never been to MT. Rainier. I've seen it though and it really it pretty.

Slamdunk said...

Excellent writing and example of reflective thinking. It is easy for me to lose touch with the big picture while focusing on what is front of me. You offer a good reminder and happy 1000 to your son.

Mrs. M said...

What a wonderful post - I am so glad you have the beautiful mountains to inspire you! :)

Homemaker Man said...

That was lovely. Although, I get the feeling that the Mount Parenthood goes on forever.