A while back, Jeff was interviewed for a blog write up on fatherhood. I know I’m a week late on taking advantage of Father’s Day to share this with everyone, but I just loved his responses so much, that I wanted to share with everyone how amazing of a father my husband is!
What is the one piece of advice, that you now realize, would have been extremely beneficial for you to know prior to the arrival of your child?
You don’t need to bring that much to the hospital. There are all kinds of lists of things you should bring: clothes, music, pen and paper, snacks, hairdryer, hard candy. The list just goes on and on. And being new parents we figured better safe than sorry. By the time we were going up to the room I could barely walk with all the unnecessary stuff we packed (not to mention leaving the hospital with even more stuff). We ended up using one pair of socks for mom, a bottle of water, and clothes for the new baby. If you do feel the need to be over prepared, leave it in the car and have someone else bring it up to you if needed.
What has been the most impactful way life has changed for you and your family since the arrival of your child?
He never leaves. Obviously. But the reality is much different than the mental preparation. You may think “oh I’ve been around kids all the time, I ‘ll be fine.” But the big difference is those kids eventually go home and you are again left to shower, sleep and take your time in the bathroom without interruption. This is now not the case. He is there crying of hunger or tired or needing a clean diaper, and if he’s not unhappy then he’s smiling and that can be even harder to walk away from.
What is one thing you are looking forward to experiencing with your family?
So many things but the one I look forward to the most is probably Christmas morning. Seeing his little sleep deprived eyes light up when he sees the gifts around the tree. That first moment in the cold, early morning and he just can’t possibly wait another minute. And he sees that the milk and cookies we left Santa are gone. And the carrots for the reindeer have been eaten. There’s something magical about that morning when you’re little. I can’t wait to see my little boy enjoy that.
What do you fear the most about being a new dad?
Just that he is OK. My mom always worried so much about me and my brothers and it always seemed excessive. “Just relax mom, we’re fine” and she would always reply with “you’ll understand when you have your own.” So true. You will never know how much you can worry about someone until you have a child. For the first week or so his every little sound (or lack thereof) in the middle of the night would get us up in a flash to make sure he was ok. And I pride myself in being a very calm and rational person. Most rationale goes out the window the minute your wife wakes you up in the middle of the night asking you to come look at this redness on his back . His every little pimple and spot was immediately Googled. Which in most cases only added to the worry (he has some redness on his butt, looks like it could be lupus). But things have calmed down in the worry department now that we have gotten used to our little dude. But every time he’s on his way home with mom from grandma’s house I find myself saying “drive safe”, and “watch out at intersections” and “text me when you get there.” And he’s not even driving yet.