I started counting the days from the moment she told me, “You’re now a daddy.” I literally and figuratively jumped with joy the very moment I heard those words.
But as those words started to sink in, I felt a pinch in my heart. I began to feel nervous and panicky. “Oh, am I actually prepared for this? What am I going to do? Will I be a good father? What should I buy? Can I provide for the baby until he finishes college? “If you are a dad-to-be, and you find yourself feeling unsupportive about the pregnancy or disconnected from your pregnant wife, try to spend extra time with a friend or acquaintance whose fathering skills you admire. It’s OK to tell him you are on shaky ground. Ask him how he manages as a dad when he’s feeling uncertain or overwhelmed.” advises Paul Joannides Psy.D.
It was mixed emotions, excitement, and worries. I was afraid, but I had to prepare myself. I was going to be a first-time daddy.
Anxiety peeps in as I imagine how the baby’s delivery will go. I felt nervous that something might go wrong. To ease myself, I started reading books and googled tips on how to be a daddy. I bought things they said the baby would need. I would come to every prenatal visit, hearing the good news that the baby was healthy, the sounds of the heartbeat were normal. Every little thing mattered a lot. They were stimulating and inspiring me to do better at my job, to be more patient with my wife, to learn more about how to be a daddy.
Then Came The Love Of My Life
And that day came. “I’m now officially a dadda,” I thought. The feeling was incomparable. I was in a state of ecstasy. The joy that was in my heart as I first laid my eyes on this fragile little angel was beyond rational thoughts. As my eyes became teary with an overpowering emotion which I can’t explain, all I was able to tell myself was, “You changed my life forever.”
I Should Have Prepared Myself Mentally
The nights at the hospital went just fine, but things were very different once we got home. The tiring and sleepless nights, the non-stop crying, the wetting, the smell of the poop, the need to wake up in the wee hours of the morning to change diapers, prepare milk, and put the baby again to sleep – if he will ever sleep. “Oh, this is not funny at all.” Doing daddy duties have slowly made me feel frustrated.
Reality Of Fatherhood
When I’m out of the house, I’m no longer that “guy next door,” but a daddy next to another daddy chatting about fatherhood stuff. The endless bills – doctor visits, insurance, milk, diapers, clothes, and so on and so forth – means double-time at making money and a little tight on budgeting. My drinking buddies are gone, and the baby was the only buddy I’ll be seeing after work. Grant Hilary Brenner MD, FAPA explains how fatherhood affects first time dads, “The time around birth is highly distressing, representing a period of intense re-shuffling of their lives on every level, and a time of fast-changing and conflicting emotions ranging from intense happiness, to apprehension, to intense fear, pride, and helpless.”
I Will Conquer All Because It’s You and I Forever
Fatherhood is not all a bed of roses, but my love for my child will conquer all adversities. It may mean sacrificing my good night’s sleep just to be with him in the wee hours of the morning, not attending to my usual social activities just to be able to walk him in the park with other daddies. No more fancy clothing and accessories, just to save for his future. All this is not sacrificing but loving. “Dads, like the moms, help children learn ways to “be with” others.” says Darcia F. Narvaez Ph.D. She adds that “ Learning reliable alternative patterns prepares the child for a varied social life.”
Seeing your child, you’ll realize the gist of for better or for worse, because here is the very person that will change your life forever. You’ll give love so unconditionally that you never thought you’d be able to share with someone. The feeling may not be love at first sight as you would see in commercials for baby products, but after spending some time together, a secure attachment will sprout, a sort of emotional bond that cannot be wrecked by anything. That is the solid bond between a father and his child.