A (baby) year of reflections

Abhishek Lahoti
2 min readNov 29, 2023

A few weeks ago we marked the 1st turn around the sun for my daughter. It made me realise how much I must’ve learned that the year felt both that long and that short at the same time. Sometimes I think listening these out feels a bit like describing snow as white…an obvious yet unnecessary fact. Yet here we are, perhaps more for me than anyone else, with a list of the key aspects of life that have forever changed (and how I hope to adapt).

To be clear, I know every child is different, but I’m sure some of these problems are felt across the parental population. At least, that’s what the Instagram reels Lauren sends me indicate.

  1. Being a parent exposes you to new luxuries. Things like sleep hold immense value. Dining at restaurants, traveling, enjoying a tipple, alone time, movies, and a myriad of other seemingly normal operations feel almost adventurous.
  2. I really believe no one is truly ready for a new life. It demands more selflessness than many of us have ever had to exhibit before. There’s no real way to be ready for this, and the only skill to master beforehand is adaptability. Nearly every day feels like a new challenge, and tackling repeat problems are mountainous triumphs.
  3. Society isn’t built for an active, dual-parent house. Money can solve a lot but you cannot buy free time. Even in a year we haven’t really figured out how to give dual, invested parenting a real try without an abundance of help. It’s not a work or money problem but an underlying fabric to our society.
  4. In too many places, the cost of childcare is egregious.
  5. Nothing can beat the smile of your baby, anytime of the day and throughout any turmoil. Just ask Lauren when we’re having a tussle and I make the baby laugh.
  6. Parenthood doesn’t just impact your relationship with your child; it affects all your relationships. Friends, family, and most importantly your partner, all have a different experience with you. There’s no such thing as too much help or communication. And if you have friends with kids, don’t wait for their reach-out to offer a hand, and don’t take their schedules personally. We’re worried you’re sick of us.

This list isn’t exhaustive but what I could cover quickly whilst I had a 20 minute window during a morning nap (case in point to many of the notes above). Life is hard, but from the challenges come a lot more love, growth and smiles. And the idea that this little human could, one way, grow up to be a more impressive person than I could imagine.

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Abhishek Lahoti

Head of Platform @ Highland Europe, advisor of startups, new father, and perpetual confused person trying to make sense of life