January 17, 2014

In the Name of Fatherly Love. ~ Tobin Tullis

Why Tigers Eat Their Young.

I landed on this portion of life at the right time (for me), but still extremely confused, distracted and dare I say scared.

Earlier than some, but later than most, my life to date dictated for me when the right time to become a father would be. The fact that “it all works out” is not wasted on me, as a visit from the stork at any earlier of a time in my life would have had much different consequences.

As far as the standard checklist goes, and unlike any other path I had explored to date, this one seemed to be in a functional order. Love-check, Marriage-check, Job-check, House-check, Baby-check. Had he been delivered in any other sequential order perhaps some drastic re-calculations would have been required, but alas, my prince came at just the right moment for me.

Up to date in my life, I have experienced moments of bubbling, unbridled emotion directed so specifically at one other human that the only seemingly appropriate reaction would have been to just lean over and bite the other person.

Words would have fallen short at such moments as there just was no time to construct them. These moments seemed to manifest out of thin air. And yet they were fleeting. Simply moments that may, but usually not, reappear for the next unforeseeable expanse of time. Noted, but not forgotten.

Babies change the frequency of this phenomenon tenfold.

Just like their predecessors before them, and in the most mundane and un-notable times, I am stricken with that energy. Just making eye contact in the early morning over his changing table, or watching him sleep. Seeing him see himself in the mirror and smile, or observing him stare at the top of a tree.

A bubbling in my toes that rise to the tip of my head leaving a wake of chills over every external hair on my body.

Electricity seems to pulse and fire out of the top of my head. I may be holding him but I can’t seem to get close enough.

To kiss him is an insult to the moment, to hug him is inept. In the blink of an eye, the only right thing to do is completely consume this child.

I must eat him!

He belongs inside me basking in the love and emotion that my soul just concocted in his honor. And then it leaves.

My pulse still pounds and he is still fixed on whatever he was fixed on before impervious to the fact that he was nearly cannibalized in the name of fatherly love.

Mere seconds were all it took.

Unlike the other moments in my life where a fraction of this experience had happened no time seems to pass before the next wave creates the undertow and sweeps me away again.

It’s exhausting, but if nothing else, and for the first time in my life, I totally understand why tigers eat their young.

Love elephant and want to go steady?

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 Assistant Editor: Gabbi Magana/Editor: Bryonie Wise

Photo: courtesy of the author

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