I now know what it means when people say “it’s been a whirlwind” because that’s how the past three weeks have been. My son’s arrival was both expected and not. We knew he was going to come but when the doctor says “let’s go” you don’t have time to let it all sink in. You have to react and, well, go.
And how did we get here?
Since Claudia was so close to her due date, she had had weekly visits with her doctor. Usually, she goes in, gets checked out, and gets sent home. The week prior though, the doctor tells her that she needs to stop working. The plan was for her to work up until she had Jonah so she wouldn’t use up too much of her maternity leave, but ok, whatever is best for the baby.
I get a call from Claudia towards the end of my work day and she says that the doctor wants to go ahead and induce. She wasn’t due until Saturday but ok, let’s go.
I get to the hospital a little while later and find out that doctor wants to check in on us again at 4:00 AM to see what we’re going to do. The couch I’m on turns into a semi-comfortable bed and we hunker down for the evening.
4:00 AM rolls around and I’m woken up by the doctor saying we need to get moving.
4:35 AM, I’m a dad.
It was that fast.
The joy that overcame me was like something I’ve never felt before. People told me about it but experiencing it was overwhelming. I was also in a state of disbelief. He was finally here. Now what? How are we going to be as parents? We’re “prepared” in that we have things but are we really prepared? If the past three weeks have been any indication, more than I thought.
While we may not know exactly what to do in every situation, we’re prepared in the sense that we know we’ve got it. My approach to parenting is the same as my approach to pretty much anything in life. I may not know everything going in, but I know I’m going to do my best because that’s what you’re supposed to do.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not easy. At all. I have an amazing wife who takes the brunt of the responsibility, but she would agree. I think the key is that it is so fulfilling to have the little one in my arms. Yeah, he may not want to go to sleep at 3:00 AM, and he may cry like there’s no tomorrow when we’re changing his diaper.
But it’s worth it.