One unexpected side effect of being a father is a tendency to get over-emotional or over-sensitive to stories or videos or movies that convey some kind of threat to children or their ability to be able to live a childhood free from threats to their safety.
Sure, I expected to be emotionally affected to some degree. But not so much so that when I watch the movie Cellular, I freak out a little bit as Kim Basinger's son is kidnapped from in front of his school right in front of Chris Evans who is trying to rescue him. Before? No big deal. Sure it sucks, but it didn't necessarily bother me in an adversely negative way. Now? I wanted to kick Jason Statham's ass just as much as Evans did! Handsome Rob was a prick bastard in that movie.
But I also cannot watch those commercials with starving children or read news articles about childhood suffering or death... at all. Not that I found them a particular joy before, but it's worse now. Much worse.
Then there's this.
A man and woman had been planning their wedding for some time. They have two kids together and one from one of their previous marriages. Their son, a mere two years old, was diagnosed several months ago with Fanconi anemia and, as they just found out last week, is only expected to live another few weeks, tops.
The couple hurried up the wedding and held it in their backyard and had their son be the best man.
Ohmidearsweetgod, I was practically crying at my desk as I read this article. Heartbreaking to say the least. Thankfully, @marcdrummond and @sizzlesays agreed with me making me feel a little more normal. And since Marc's daughter is only a day younger than Nate, we're both hitting these same overemotions together.
Parenthood is not easy. It's not meant to be.
The threat of something like this does not make it easier.
It does, however, make me want to hug Nathan and hold onto him for dear life.