Breaking Dad

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So I’m probably one of the four or five remaining thirtysomething males in the UK who hasn’t seen all of ‘Breaking Bad’. (The discussion about the lengths a chap has to go to each day to avoid finding out how it ends can wait for another time.)

As Kitty’s birth approached I started remedying this with late night Netflix viewings, and as you’ll know if you’ve seen it, this was me effectively starting to smoke crack and needing – needing, I tell you – to set aside time for it, regardless of all the life upheavals going on. What a moron. So tired.

Anyway. [SPOILERS AHEAD!] I’m just at the end of Season Two, and the last couple of episodes have profoundly upset me in a way I wasn’t expecting, because they involve the death of a young woman (nooooo, Jessica Jones, nooooo) and the emotional impact of this death on her father.

I would never claim that being a new dad has given me any kind of additional insight into the human condition – I barely have the wherewithal to have a shower, FFS – but it has definitely exposed fresh emotional lodes to be mined in my head, and the last episodes were like charges going off in those newly opened caverns of my brain. I needed a few days to recover.

Why? Because of the brief, beautiful, dreadful siren that accompanied those moments, reminding me that I have a daughter too now, placing me in those situations, inviting me to imagine how it might feel. All new sensations.

None of this is especially profound, of course, but the small ways in which parenthood is changing everyday experiences continue to fascinate me. And god help me when I get around to watching ‘Taken’ again. I’m already rehearsing The Speech, in case I ever need it.

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