It’s been a few moons since I paced through the hospital hallways. Migrating my heavily pregnant wife from one sluggish hospital to another. Did it help? I bet not! But, ultimately, it worked with the options I had and never again will I think within the box. All I can attest for sure is that they have been three fantastic months since then to date.
Do I love it? Well, I don’t think there is anything that has made me more proud of myself that being a dad and owning it. It wasn’t easy at first because of all the people around me. They care too much and this made me doubt my every move. I mean, everybody had their perception of parenthood, and everyone’s story scared the crap out of me. [But I later learned that you will never be ready to be a dad]
But for sure, its only scary when you let every talk get into your head. But it’s hard not to let it because you want the best for you and your family. The experience is not as bad, though. 😅 Well, this is based on my experience as a first-time dad and a very young dad for that matter. One thing I believe to be true is that you never get a responsibility that you cannot handle. It’s okay to freak out but own it and amazing things will happen in your life.
Before I become a boring motivational speaker, let’s jump right in and share some of the experiences I have been through during these three fantastic months.
I think changing `em diapers is one of the most overrated things. It’s challenging at first but once you get the hang of it, you can do it in your sleep. [I can’t count the number of times I have changed the diapers in my sleep] The first time I changer Jnr’s diaper was the first night we came home from the hospital. It had been a challenging time and my wife was healing, fresh from the theater, and all. Simply, I had to man up; it is my family and I am all they got. So, I had never seen diapers before in my life and here I was trying to figure out what to do with them.
I remember my internet was out because I had not been home during the one week I had spent at the hospital so my subscription my have been overdue. I had to purchase data bundles and find a youtube video tutorial on how to get it done. The hustle is real. 🤦♂️ An hour or so after midnight and my little man over here was crying his lungs out. [I can’t stand it when he cries] I was so sleepy and I a few minutes later I had found my way around the whole thing. By the time I changed them diapers for the third time that night, I was so good at it I thought of writing a tutorial or something. Truth be told though, I only change the diapers when he takes a leak. Any time he does some real damage I hand him over to his mama with no apologies. 😂
The next thing was getting him to sleep. This wasn’t tough at first. A few minutes in my comfy hands and the guy was peacefully asleep. However, this was only for the first month. Towards the third month, things begin to change. I think children begin to fit in their parents’ world and way of life. During my paternal leave and two months later when I quit my job, I have been freelancing on a full-time basis. My working hours are pretty odd because I work at night and sleep pretty much during the day.
At first, I thought this would be good until our times collided. One thing about being a dad is that no one cares that you’re tired, at least not your baby. My wife cares so much but that’s just one person. Our little man doesn’t give a shit. Infants have a very Corky personality and that’s every dad’s weakness right there. So, at times he wants me, and other times he can’t stand my presence. I remember one time he cried for almost half an hour straight like he’d been possessed. The moment I got up from the couch and moved to the bedroom, he started smiling at his mum. To test my theory I go back to the couch and sat beside him and his mama. One look at me and he was screaming like I was some kinda monster.
One thing I’ll share with you for free is that it gets worse as they grow up. A few weeks ago, I would literary wake him up just so we stared at each other. Now, I want him to sleep but he won’t sleep. Gone are the days he would chill and later fall asleep while alone in his crib. Nowadays he won’t sleep in the crib anymore. He only sleeps between daddy and mummy in the big bed. He’s getting naughty now and because he can’t understand my language yet, there’s nothing I can do about it.
Here’s a funny story now; a few days ago Jnr wakes me up with his usual painful pinches. Instantly, I know he’s taken a leak and needs his diapers changed. His mom had been working late so she’d slept late. I didn’t want to wake her up so I decided to man up and do it. So, my big @ss crawls out of the bed to the closet. I pick a diaper, baby wipes, and a mackintosh ready to get it over with. I had slept for maybe one hour and some change so I was half awake, half asleep. Usually, I place the mackintosh on the bed, put him on top of the Macintosh to prevent messing the sheets in case there’s a leak and change `em diapers.
I’m doing my things sluggishly because I’m hella sleepy. But a few seconds before switching the diapers, he does his thing. He takes a leak. His piss is all over my face and on the bed. Suddenly, I’m fully awake and cursing bitterly feeling like I can beat him so badly. He smiles sheepishly as he raises his legs and arms celebrating the well-timed execution. So what do I do now? I wipe my face, finish the job, and go to my working space because I can’t sleep anymore. I’m sleepy but my side of the bed is wet. I don’t know how the piss got past the Macintosh. But it did and I was screwed. In my house, I walked out of the bedroom and slowly locked the door behind me.
I don’t know whether I did the same to my dad but for the first time, I wished Jnr ill. I wished him the same fate when he became a dad. For the remaining part of the long and cold night, I locked my legs beneath my office desk as I tried to clear some backlogs, work I had planned to finish the following day.
One thing I appreciate is how Jnr has amazingly strengthened the family bond. It’s just magical and I don’t think anything could have done it this effectively and in an organic manner. I mean, I thought I had reached the horizons of love, seen and experienced it all but I’m making new discoveries. And it’s bloody amazing.
Well, it’s amazing until people stop giving a shit about you no more. I’m going to be honest here because it hurts me, genuinely. Since I became a dad, all phone calls are like. “Hey man what’s up? How’s the little man, how’s his mummy doing? … And how are you BTW?” I love some attention because the people who call me are very few. And when they do, they ask about how I’ve been as a BTW. 😒 But it’s okay because, ultimately, I’m happy before and after the call when I look at the amazing blessing I have here.
The bottom line is they have been three fantastic months. Fantastic months that have been made perfect by their unique imperfections. Three fantastic months of learning, loving, laughing, and ultimately, living. It’s feeling I wanna be selfish and keep all to myself. Because it’s amazing.