What should a soon-to-be father expect in the first few weeks?

Guess what?  You’re now a father!  No matter how many hollywood flicks you’ve seen where the Dad is screaming “Push Push!”, it is all BS!.  It’s one of the most surreal moments of your life.  Everything is happening so fast and your mind doesn’t catch up till much later.

I tried the whole “Push Baby! Push”, but it came out completely monotonous and then this ninth gate of hell voice came back at me:

You try pushing this thing out!

I’m not going to lie, I was scared,

Don’t get me wrong, I was completely fascinated by the whole thing!  I watched over the doctor’s shoulder as everything was going down.  It was all good until he did the episiotomy.  That freaked me out because it sounded like someone cutting construction paper.  I watched the one thing, that I’ve loved since puberty, completely destroyed!   It was nutts.  In all of the hustle and bustle I got handed a pair of scissors with a command to cut the cord.  You would think that this would be like a knife through butter, but it was more like cutting a garden hose!

I made the mistake of following the nurses to the nursery.  This was a mistake! They handle babies on a daily basis.  I wasn’t prepared for the flipping, tossing, poking and proding they were doing with my new child.

I almost got kicked out before delivery because the guy kept messing up on my wife’s epidural.  I was getting mad, and unconsciously, started stepping towards him muttering expletives.

I hang out after all is said and done, but it’s still a new experience with no bearing on what is going to happen next.

We take my daughter home for the first time.  I’ve never driven in such a saintly fashion before.  I was aware of everything around me.

Being a father is not something that sets in very quickly.  The surreal feeling sticks around for awhile.  It’ll even kick in sometimes throughout the years.  You’re now a father.  You’ve never handled anything so precious in your arms.  You’ll never handle something with the absolute thought of fragility as you will your first born.

Every action you take while they’re in your arms is thought through ahead of time.  You have never had the feeling of protection over something as you will your first born.  This isn’t fully realized at first, but it is a natural instinct.

I am a father of three.  The first one was the most insane thing I’ve ever experienced.  My DNA combined with this woman’s to create a new life.  A simple crazy act created this.

Nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing, prepares you for the first time that your child calls you “Daddy”.  The feeling that this being believes you to be it’s protecter and provider for all time is exhilarating.

I should note that these last three paragraphs are all reflections from later.  Your experience with a first child is usually a “Holy $h!*” moment.  It really does take awhile to set in.

It’s ok to feel freaked out by the whole thing.  We all feel that way.  No matter how hard we try to pretend to be men, many of us still feel like boys half the time, so this experience is completely foreign, but natural.

If it’s a girl:
Be the person you hope that your daughter will end up with.  You’ll guide her towards a much better quality of man.

If it’s a boy:
Be the responsible man that you would call a true friend;  Someone you know you can depend on no matter what.

You only have one shot at this.  Regardless of how you feel, life is over in a flash, all of the decisions you make will paint the experiences your children base their decisions off of.  This reverberates to their children and so forth.  The responsibility you have has a father is the greatest you’ll ever know;  Realize it for what it is.

Change the planet by being the best that you can absolutely be.

When all else fails, remember, there is no Manual for this;  We all wing it the best we can.

Chapley Watson
Husband, Father, Software Developer, Attempted Writer, and many other things depending on the day.
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