Monday, 8 May 2017

Let's Talk: Becoming Dad


It feels very obvious that Tom should change the baby's nappies, bathe her and dress her but the older generation would refer to Tom as a 'hands on' Dad. Thinking about it, eighty years ago he wouldn't have even been allowed into the room while I was giving birth. I feel very lucky that he was. Those days (yes days) on the labour ward are a blur for me so we slung the baby in the carrier and went out for a de-brief!

Me: Let's start at the beginning. How would you describe labour? 

Tom: It's something that you can't prepare for, amazing. We had this birth plan and I knew things might change but when it got turned completely upside down and you were totally out of it I had to make decisions and just hope I was doing the right thing for you and the baby. I was in awe of you. Very proud.

Me: Thanks. I try. People laugh when I say it but I really think that labour and birth was harder for you than it was for me...Ok maybe not harder but really really tough, I wouldn't have wanted to swap places and be the powerless one, I'd have been terrified. How about once she was born? 
Tom: After nearly 48 hours without a wink of sleep you crashed out and I was alone holding her. Suddenly two people now needed me, but weirdly I didn't feel tired, I was on autopilot. It's so strange, you don't notice it before but if you look there are all these zombie new dads walking around maternity wards, getting jugs of water, making McDondalds runs, scared to sleep incase they're needed. I worried before about not knowing how to do things like change nappies but you soon realise that it's pretty instinctive and even if you do make a hash of it it's not like anyone comes around to check your work!

Me: I was in awe of you at that point, you were brilliant, I had absolutely no energy and you did everything for both of us, I remember standing in the corridor with you and you were trying to help me get to the bathroom and she started crying in her little plastic cot and you just didn't know who needed you more. Do you think it changed you that day?

Tom: Totally life changing, very...responsible. but I've almost forgotten what life was like before. I definitely find myself gravitating to other new dads when we're out. Football has been overtaken by birth as the top topic of conversation for a while. 

Me: I've noticed. In quite graphic detail sometimes. What's been your favourite time so far?

Tom: Bringing her home, the first Christmas that passed in a bit of a daze, all of it. Lots of dads told me before we had her that the first six weeks is really boring but I just find every stage incredible. Now that she can smile and laugh it's brilliant though.

Me: Totally mind blowing. What are you most looking forward to?
Tom: I don't want to rush her on because I want to enjoy it all but when the gurgles become words, that will be brilliant. I can't wait to have a conversation with her. 

Tom is wearing the Babybjörn Baby Carrier One in Leaf Print from the #dadstories collection (we love the holiday vibe of the bold print but if loud is not your bag, the collection also features other simpler, less leafy designs) Find out more here.

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1 comment

  1. I'm sat here crying! This is so beautiful. I wish there was more! Xx

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