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With my imminent grandfatherhood just three weeks away (if all goes according to the experts) it’s no surprise that it has become the topic of conversation wherever I find myself.
The other day, talking to the neighbour, he commented that little Miss Tantrum and her other half are very brave having a child in these “uncertain times”.
In a world plagued by Covid, a country rife with crime and corruption and the threat of collapsing services like electricity and water, “now might not be the best time to start a family”, he said.
Although I do agree that the little Olive will be born into a very unstable universe, I found myself asking one question: when is the best time to have a family?
My parents, like their contemporaries, started a family at the height of the Cold War. Imagine being the parents of a newborn, where the threat of nuclear war and the annihilation of mankind was a very distinct reality.
My grandparents started a family in 1943, when the world was at war for a second time, and it looked as if the Nazis might just achieve their goal of world domination.
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Before them my great-grandparents had children during World War I and before them, the DNA which determines my being, was transferred to a next generation despite the Anglo-Boer War.
We can follow this timeline back for thousands of years.
Littler Miss Tantrum’s mother and I started our own family at the dawn of our democracy. While everybody was buying baked beans and bullets, we were bulking up on bottles and babygrows.
Point is, if everybody waits for the perfect time to start a family, the earth’s population would be no more than a handful.
But, when it comes to becoming a granddad, the timing always seems perfect.
I cannot wait for the little Olive to announce her arrival with an almighty scream. I cannot wait to tickle her littlepink toes, kiss her rosebud mouth and rock her to sleep.
I will also master the timing of handing her right back to Little Miss Tantrum whenever she needs a nappy change.