Joseph A. Pinto

barflypoet & author of dark fiction

I’m Joseph Pinto.  Mr. Mom.  Horror writer.

It isn’t easy.  Being a horror writer, that is.  Spent most my life sacrificing my dream of becoming an author rather than chasing it down.  Sacrificed it to a thankless family business besieged by greed, deceit and corruption, and then sacrificed it to start my own.  Sacrificed it to daily bouts of depression endured over demons long gone; sacrificed it to bad luck, ill fate, those who will never truly believe and those who will never own belief.

The perfect makeup for a writer.

But I’m Mr. Mom now, and I earned the right.  Busted my ass so one day I could work from home, remain at home, give my child something I did not have but needed in my own youth.  Childhood is tough.  Who’d have thought?  It leaves a lot of scars sometimes.  Ironic most aren’t discovered until so much later on.

But I’m Mr. Mom now.  Need to shuttle my daughter around to therapy of some sort or another nearly every day of the week.  Born with a deletion of her chromosome 7, the doctors say.  Still not sure how to classify it.  They only know it can cause delayed growth and development, intellectual disability, distinctive facial features, skeletal abnormalities, delayed speech, and other medical problems. 

Reads like a horror story.  I’m a horror writer.  You’d think I’d be ready for it.  You think it’s easy? 

My daughter doesn’t know horror.  Doesn’t know the horrors of the world; doesn’t know the nightmares her daddy has faced, both real and imagined.  She only knows Cookie Monster, Cinderella, Tinkerbell and the purity of love.  She works hard everyday.  Pushes everyday.  Progresses everyday.  

It isn’t easy.  Being a horror writer, that is.  Most friends and family and strangers give two shits less what you do or what you’re attempting to achieve, unless of course you’re sharing with the world that you’re stuck in traffic watching a bald man pick shards of wax from his ear in the car beside you.  Then, this is newsworthy.  Then, this is big.   

 This is the fruit of sacrifice?

But I’m Mr. Mom now.  Shaping a tender life from all I ever did right, all I ever did wrong, all I have learned, and all I will never know.  Cupping innocence so gingerly God forbid it should ever leak from between my fingers. 

Yes, this is the fruit of sacrifice.  I know now I will do it again and again.

It isn’t easy being a horror writer.

But being Mr. Mom is.

You think you worked hard before she came along. Then you realize you will do anything...

23 thoughts on “Sacrifice is not what you give up, but what you ultimately gain

  1. This made me well up.

    The world has not yet understood the worth of a good parent who offers unconditional love.

    As a mum of two grown daughters and a very proud new grandmother, I share your joy of being a parent ( and now grandparent) and I wish you every success in your future with your lovely daughter.
    She has a super dad in you.

    1. I answer with a quiet, humble thank you

  2. GreenWillow says:

    Oh, what a cute munchkin she is. Good for you, Mr. Mom!
    You know every time I start feeling a little sorry for myself for all my (generally self-created) detours and roadblocks on this long and winding road toward publication I find someone working through it with every bit as many if not more challenges than me.
    Keep up the good work!


    1. Thank you! A lifeline in rough seas…

  3. What a beautiful post, and what a beautiful little girl! She’s very lucky to have you.

    1. Thank you, Erin. Much appreciated. I try hard; sometimes I get it, sometimes not. But Lord I try!

  4. Great post from a great man. I have eight children ranging in age from 35 to 2. I love them all. My only regret is that I am divorced and can not be with them like I wish I could. My young daughter, 3 now, has been diagnosed as having a form of autism. She is the most loving child I have ever seen. I would not change a thing about her.

    I am a horror writer. i wish i could be a Mr. Mom as well.

    1. I’m very sorry to hear that. I often catch myself in the throes of “woe-is-me,” then I see some other kids while I’m at therapy with Athena who are far worse. But it’s all relative. Who’s it worse for? The parent, or the child? There’s a reason some children must go through this; wish I knew why. I’d like to believe that the more trials conquered while here on earth, the greater the reward in the next life. That gets me through. My daughter is nearly three as well, Blaze. It’s tough. Just appreciate her love, & keep sending her your own love & positive energy through prayer!

  5. J Lawrence says:

    A moving tribute to your beautiful daughter.

  6. Amy says:

    You seem to balance both aspects of your life pefectly. Your daughter can grow up in the caring hands of her father and see how his guidance helps her become whatever she was ment to become.
    Keep up the great writing and always keep reaching for your goal! You will do wonderfully!!!!!!!

    1. Much appreciated, thanks, Amy!

  7. ranae says:

    Joe the more I read the more I am impressed! You are an amazing writer and daddy! Our children show us what it means to be strong. From the time Tyler was 2 he was poked and prodded after hours in the car going to the children’s hospital in Philly for testing. After years of testing they never figured out what was wrong or what causes the issue he has but he bore every test and needle as if was no big deal while I felt every pinch and poke. I try to take his bravery with me in everything I do. Tyler is now almost 17 still with no diagnosis as to the issues with his lymph nodes but we still go for testing thankfully only once a year now as opposed to the once a month. He was always sick and thank god he is so much better now. You and Athina are in my prayers. She is a beautiful little girl who has a smile that is contageous!

    1. Thank you, and I do hope Tyler keeps plugging away! Always remember – positve energy! You can both receive & project it! =)

  8. jeremy says:

    yes, i second that, great post, mr. mom! a lot of people really don’t care what writers try to “do”

    1. Thanks, Jeremy, I appreciate that! And yes, most just don’t “get it.”

  9. Your daughter is beautiful. You’re a great dad. Never doubt yourself. If you believe, you can do it all.

    1. Thank you, Johanna. It helps to have people like you in my corner.

  10. Fiery says:

    Joe …couldn’t possibly want to hug more than I do right now.
    Your daughter is an angel . Truly

    1. Joseph Pinto says:

      best comment ever! xo

      1. Fiery says:

        All true 💋

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