I am going to be a father. In fact, by the time you are reading this, I will already be a father. As the wife and I enter the final stretch of our pregnancy, it’s plain to see that becoming first time parents truly is a marathon, and in the grand scheme of things, we’re barely lacing up the running shoes.
The Big Reveal
The first time I saw my future child was January 16, 2015, an approximately nine week old fetus. It lightly fluttered and resembled one of those little key chain gnomes I used to play with as a kid. The last thing it looked like was human. There was a part of me that questioned whether this thing was mine or if the wife had had an extra-terrestrial marital affair. We left the first ultrasound feeling more lost than ever. Those damn Target pregnancy tests were right. We were going to be parents. Four months post-wedding, this wasn’t planned, this wasn’t in the cards. I just wasn’t ready. This thing growing inside of the wife was early! And for the first time, I felt resentment, I felt anger … I felt fear.
The Big Ankles
Eight months later, the belly is full and the once alien-like thing fluttering at nine weeks now much more closely resembles a human. I now know the wife didn’t have a fling with E.T. I’ve built the IKEA furniture along with the Amazon crib. I’ve taken the Lamaze classes and read (more like skimmed) the baby books the wife has given me to read. I have tried to massage the fluid building up in the wife’s growing ankles. I have had to learn words like latching, Braxton-hicks, and mucus plug. I have gained weight right along with the wife. I too, sans the actual physical carrying of the fetus, am pregnant. I have cried more, laughed more and eaten way more pickles. I have said some pretty idiotic nonsensical things that I have quickly blamed on “pregnant brain.” And now after all the small little wins … from completing an IKEA dresser with no extra bolts to successfully going on the hospital tour and accidently hitting the emergency button causing alarms and nurses to quickly chime in with frantic “may I assist you’s,” I think I’m ready. I think I’m good. I’m going to be a dad. I’m going to be a good dad. I’m going to have a son. And I’m going to love him. I will never though … ever … wear dad jeans (sorry Wrangler).