Although experiencing Motherhood for the first time is quite the life-altering experience on its own, we tend to put so much focus on it that we at times overlook our partners, who too are going through the emotional roller coaster of what it is to be a father for the very first time.
My husband’s journey with fatherhood began long before our Baby Luca arrived into the world, it started with the first ultra-sound, the first scare, the first baby kick, the first crib assembly, the first hospital run. Although I was the one who was getting bigger and bigger as the months passed, he was also going through some major changes in his life, suddenly our priorities changed, our hopes shifted and even our home, begun to look different.
I remember his face as they slowly strolled me to the operating room, it was the first time I see him look so worried, scared, anxious and alone. I wanted to get up and comfort him, but I couldn’t. So he sat there, for almost an hour, not knowing who to worry about more, me or the baby.
And I’ll never forget his teary eyes, as he heavily dragged Baby Luca’s crib into my room as I met him for the first time, he was filled with so much love and relief, he was bursting pride, joy and emotions that I couldn’t possible put into words.
He never left our side. For three whole days and nights at the hospital, he would spend his days between comforting me and learning everything there was to know about handling a newborn, shadowing the nurses as they showered Baby Luca, changed nappies, and burped him.
I watched him in awe as he carried him with so much confidence, as he buckled him in the car seat for the very first time, while he comforted him and at the same time helped me walk to the car. Suddenly his responsibilities doubled, like he had the worries of the world on his shoulders, though it never showed on his face.
For the first two weeks, we jokingly nicknamed him sage-femme (French for Mid-wife.) Although I was the one reading up on baby care throughout my pregnancy, suddenly he become the expert, my go-to authority, the baby whisperer. As I struggled to get my health back and heal, he was the brave one who would shower baby like a pro, he’d spend his days and nights, caring for our little one, soothing him and waking every 3 hours for the night-feedings. He was a natural. And not once did he complain, nor tell me he was tired, he did what he did with so much grace and effortlessness.
Nine months later, and he is still on daddy duty, as dedicated as ever to give Baby Luca a beautiful childhood, and although it can never be flawless, his determination is astounding. I see the sparkle Baby Luca has in his eyes as soon as he spots him walk in the door and it’s almost mesmerizing. I couldn’t have ever wished for a better role model for our little boy.
I hope Baby Luca gets his father’s patience, I hope he gets his kindness, I hope he gets his ambition, I hope he gets his optimism, I hope he gets his humor, I hope he gets weird quirks, I hope he gets his OCD, I hope he gets his charisma, I hope he gets his diplomacy and I hope one day he will love his family just as much as his father loves us.
Happy Father’s Day to all the wonderful new overlooked fathers out there!