Confessions of a First-Time Dad
September 25, 2018
Please be advised that this article is a humorous reflection of the twists and turns that new or expectant dads could face!
My plans before the baby came
When we learned that our family was going to have a new addition, I asked myself what kind of father I was going to be. Most of all, I wanted to do things right, make the right calls to limit any “damage” to my child, to prepare my little one for the future ahead.
I told myself, if it’s a girl, I’ll protect her from mean kids, I’ll make her feel good about herself so she is confident, I’ll teach her how to respect herself as a woman, and later on… I’ll warn her against the intentions of certain men.
If it’s a boy? Well, it’ll be “Participate in sports and stay away from drugs. Bros and school are your priority, obviously. And respect women too.”
Basically, my game plan for my future child’s education was finally ready.
What I learned on the job
Then, this tiny pink bundle of joy came into my life and I realized that I was clueless.
The thing is, long before you need to deal with relationships, bros, girlfriends, drug issues or self-esteem problems, you’ve go a whole heap of stuff going on… and not just for baby either.
I took this little being in my arms and I didn’t know it would be so tiny, so fragile and so light. I didn’t know that I’ll be able to hold him in my arms without fear of dropping him, that cradling him against my chest would feel completely natural.
I didn’t know how to make him burp or how to clean him.
I didn’t know that my girlfriend would buy so many clothes for a little guy who would only wear them for a few weeks of his life. No joke, my baby had more shirts and clothing sets than I do! I was also surprised that such a little thing could get so many clothes dirty in record time.
I didn’t know that diapers were so expensive. I didn’t even know that there were so many different kinds of formula milk, and baby bottles and nipples too! Seriously, a universal baby nipple model shouldn’t be that hard to make.
I didn’t know that two- or three-tenths of a degree could be a big deal. Whether my pool is at 82°F or 84°F, it’s all the same to me… but you can be sure your little one can tell the difference between 37.5°C or 38.5°C.
I didn’t know it would be so hard to leave the house to go to work―even though I love my job. I didn’t know that I would miss seeing that cute little face and those big eyes after only one day at work. And I didn’t know that seeing his smile as he reaches out to me when I come home would wipe away all of my day’s exhaustion.
In a nutshell, I wasn’t ready.
But truth is, no one is ever ready for things like these. We improvise as we go, and it’s perfect that way!