- Family and Parenting
First Time Dad? You Have Got To Read This!
Ok...Here's What They Don't Tell You!
Let's take this from the top. First? Get a rock glass. Put in one ice cube. Why only one you may ask? It's ok to ask questions, because I'm the only one that's gonna tell you straight! Back to the ice...if you add more than one, it will affect the taste of your Scotch and that's something you never want to do! Where was I...oh yea...pour in 2 shots and kick your feet up...
Me? I was a late bloomer. I was 40 when I was told the happy news that we were expecting our first baby. Coming from a really big family, all I kept hearing was that it was about time! As I asked one cousin after the other as far as what I can expect, all I was told was - you'll find out soon enough. Once again, all of this was new to me, as I'm sure it may be to all of you too. My dad was about 500 miles away so all I was able to do was constantly get the typical fatherly advice over the phone. Mom was a bit further away...looking down from Heaven; probably laughing and saying...HA! Now it's your turn! So, I decided to go slow; be patient, understanding and help in any way that I can.
1st Trimester...(sublte changes)
First? We had to get into the habit of those constant Doctor visits. I always made myself available to take my wife - not only to be supportive - but because I was curious about everything.
Subtle Change #1...
For breakfast, I was told to get the egg sandwich from the local deli. So, before going to the office, I made sure they had it ready at the counter for me so all I had to do was run in and run out. No problem. A few weeks later, the request came for extra cheese on the sandwich. Once again, no problem. Except when I would get to the office and get the phone call saying - THEY FORGOT THE EXTRA CHEESE! Ok...
Sublte Change #2
After about the second month, the morning sickness started to kick in. That was not pleasant. Cleaning up sausage, egg & cheese sandwiches on the floor or where ever it landed was not my way of starting the day.
Sutlbe Change #3
Cravings? Here you go..."Honey on the way home can you please stop off at Burger King and get me a Whopper! And can you stop off at the Supermarket , we're out of chips and dip and don't forget the Chips Ahoy cookies. And I don't mean to be a pest (yea right...) can you go to the store and and then Burger King so my food doesn't get cold? Yes dear...
Subtle Change #4
Then came the heartburn at 2:30 a.m.! Take it from me guys, NEVER EVER say the following remark...maybe if you didn't have that Whopper at 8:00 p.m. along with popcorn around 10:30 p.m. and ice-cream just before going to bed around 11:30 p.m. - maybe, just maybe, you wouldn't have an upset stomach?
Sublte Change #5
Peeing. Yes, I said peeing. Be prepared that when you go out to the store, relatives, movies, what ever...make sure you plan your route to include places for her to stop for an emergency pee. Once again some free advice...AND DON'T EVER SAY - BUT HONEY, YOU JUST WENT 10 MINUTES AGO!
My first baby picture! I'm probably thinking - man, can I use a drink about now!
So there we were, on our way to the Doctor's office. My wife said they're going to do a Sonogram today, we get to see what the baby looks like! Once again guy's, I had no idea what to expect! I said will we be able to see the sex of the baby? Free advice my brothers ...If you really want to know the sex? Never ask! Most women have this thing about finding out the day they come into this world. So, because I asked, that was the reply I got. So, my advice is - don't ask. BUT , when you are looking at the actual Sonogram, ask the technician! Drop some subtle hints, like, wow, that's my boy! And point to something that may look like a penis!
So, talk about weird! The tech comes in and just like in the movies, squirts this jelly stuff on her belly and proceeds to slide this device, what one side to the other. I look at the screen and freak out! I mean, there's this little baby, just laying there hangin' out! I tell you guys, it's just unreal to see this. It really does put a lot of things in perspective.
The Dr. then put some kind of a "belt" around my wife's belly. When I asked what that was, he just said - listen...I started to hear what sounded like a flat tire - going thump, thump, thump, thump...he said that was the baby's heart beat! A life, growing in my wife's belly. It'll change you my brothers. It changed me. That night I was kinda quiet. When my wife asked if I was ok, I just said - couldn't be better and just smiled.
Now we're cookin'...
Their "Profile"! Yes, they do get bigger!
Yes, I am talking about those wonderful ta-ta's...Oh where would we guys be without them? Probably not in a Dr.'s office looking at a Sonogram of your baby in the making! Once again men? Treat them, as always - gently. Women are always sensitive about them, one way or another. They may want extra attention, which is ok with me. Or, they may want them to be left alone. Which was not ok with me!
"Stretch Marks!" Nothing says - honey, don't worry about it! They have creams for that now, better than flowers!
And, those times when she would say - look at me - I'm starting to look like a cow! Be careful guys. The proper response is; No you don't honey! You look radiant, you're glowing! Tell her how adorable she looks with her beautiful belly! By the way...I should have mentioned this earlier...Make friends with your local florist - man, are you going to need them often! As well as the nearby candy store! These are you two best stops on the way home to difuse most of her cranky, emotional and frustrating moods. As far as our needs? I'm sure you already know the direct route to the friendly neighborhood liquor store!
Ok, NOW the "eating sensibile" comes into play...
More changes...now comes the salads and the fruits to slow down this weight gain from the pregnancy. But keep it positive guys - honey you look great now matter what!
Well, us guys have to keep up our strength to, you know!
That's why we neen extra beef for a manly meal and extra Heinekens to wash it down with!
Yes, she will tend to snore from time to time. But, let her slide on this one guys, if she can deal with ours, we can handle hers...
What the hell was that?
So, one night we're watching TV and my Mrs. says - give me your hand. I said, but it's not Saturday night! She puts my hand on her belly and I feel the baby move! Unreal guys! That's our kid in there saying, I think I'd like to move to a bigger room!
Major tip for you guys...and the sooner you start this, the better!
She will soon develop a lot of physical discomfort - ya think? Back aches, head aches, leg pains, etc.
THIS IS PROBABLY, BESIDES FLOWERS AND CANDY, THE MOST IMPORTANT TIP IN HELPING HER TO RELAX!
Have her stretch out on her side, perfect time is when you're watching TV and take your index and middle finger and slowly glide it against her skin. This will relax her big time. Be prepared though, she will want this 24/7. But, it's definitely worth it - anything to help her to feel better! After all guys, that's your family on your lap.
Coming home to the final stretch! (Ouch, no pun intended to my lady readers!
Quick review guys...
Ok, you've done your best to help her feel better, as she dealt with the following;
1) weird food cravings, morning sickness, mood swings, weight gain, stretch marks, breast enlargements, snoring, back aches, constant peeing, Dr. appointments, more than you'd care to count, lousy nights sleep...
Not to mention; Finish the baby room ready, Have the baby shower, Order the cigars, Start thinking about trust funds,The cost for a good college, How much for another car? (You know they're going to want to drive ASAP!)
Once again, I have to say that those Magic Finger Massages as I call them, were always a big help. I'm sure you can agree - especially with more and more of those body aches and pains. As well as those other feelings of depression, anxiety, anxiousness - just plain nervousness about having a baby and just wanting to get it over with already! And far as my wife? I'm sure she's experiencing some of these feelings as well!
What was that? The contractions are starting to occur from time to time? Uh oh...Time for another cube and refill...
So, how you guys doing, good? I'm sure you doing everything you can to help out with the shopping, cooking, house cleaning, laundry - what ever it takes to make her feel comfortable. I always believed that what ever emotions your wife is feeling, the baby is feeling as well.
So, all of those extra hugs and kisses, fussing all over her, breakfast in bed on the weekends, leaving her litte notes around the house saying how much you love her and how you can't wait for our family to come about - what ever it takes to make your "family" feel warm and fuzzy inside and out.
Those dreaded words! I remember them as if it was yesterday or should I say - last night...
It was 3:00 a.m. I'm suddenly woken up with "Honey, I think my water just broke" ringing in my ears! I turned on the light and saw that the bed was soaked! Once again guys? I had NO idea what to expect! I jump out of bed screaming - but we didn't pack a suitcase? Should I call the Doctor now or wait till we get to the hospital? Do I have to call my insurance company for anything? Is there enough gas in the car? I didn't fill it up last night, I was too tired! Besides, it was only Monday night. I thought you weren't due till the weekend?
Thankfully, my wife's quick wit brought me down to reality - would you please shut the %^&* up! I shook my head and took her advice, besides, she was the one that was ABOUT TO HAVE A BABY RIGHT THERE IN OUR BEDROOM AND NOT ME!
So, while I was cleaning up mess on the bed, what does she do? My wife is washing her self, fixing her hair and doing her makeup! Guy's, once again, if you value your life, while she is getting ready - DON'T SAY A WORD! Remember, she's more nervous at this point than you are.
Fortunately, she did have a suitcase already packed in the closet. So, out the door we go, but now I can't find my car keys. So, she gives me hers.
Now, we get to the hospital, get checked in and settle down. The nurse came in and said not too worry. She hasn't dilated much and it can be a while. So, we talk. We talk about anything. NAMES! WE NEVER DECIDED ON NAMES! What are going go call our first child! What if it's a boy - should I name him after me? What if it's a girl - do your name it after yourself or your mother? Once again, I was told to calm down. So, we went over our list and chose names.
As the day turned into, well, day, we made some phone calls and got her as comfortable as possible. She was doing really good, my wife - a real trooper. Around 5:30 p.m. that night, the contractions started to get closer - along with the pain. Finally around 6:00 p.m. she asked the Doctor to give her an epidural to help with the pain. We're feeling much better now.
About an hour later, she started to experience some heavy duty pain. The nurse came in and just gave her a bit more meds, saying once again, this can take a while. For some reason, the nurse called me over, after doing I guess, an examination of my wife. She said look at this? What do I see guys? And get prepared to freak out - I see the top of our child's head! I start yelling, get the Doctor, get the Doctor! She said he was in the next room. As I walk in this guy is sleeping! I said are you nuts? The baby's coming! Lets go, your'e up! So, there here is, moving slowly, putting on his Doctor clothes and I said - hey Doc, by the time you get in there, my kid will be in college! He laughed as I followed him into the delivery room.
After about 15 minutes or so of pushing, our daughter was born. After hearing so many horror stories, I thanked God for making it not too difficult for my wife and daughter.
Welcome Home My Girls!
A Dream Come True*
There she was. This sweet little thing that was about to change my life - forever. Get ready guys...Don't even think about getting out of changing diapers! Now that was really weird and gross. But, she was my little girl, my little world. Feeding was another thing that I had to get used to. I mean, girls know this stuff right? But us guys? Forgetaboutit!
Last story our of millions...I get woken up out of sound sleep - my turn to feed my love. For what ever the reason, my wife got our daughter and brought her into our bed. (by brothers, what ever you do man, do not get into the habit of brining your children into your bed!)
So, I get up, take a bottle out of the frig and it's heating up. Mean time my wife is saying please hurry cause she couldn't get our daughter with her perfectly formed lungs to stop crying. I'm coming, I'm coming. As I running to the bedroom, I put the cover on the bottle then hand it to my wife - of which she immediately goes to pop it into our daughters little mouth. One problem though - I forgot to tighten the cover and as my wife went to put it into her mouth, the cover came off and went all over our baby's face!
Oh, wait a minute. One more quick story and please me brothers, PLEASE PAY ATTENTION!
Ok...there we were, waiting for the Doctor to give us the green light to be able to "fool around again." So, we get the word - along with some kind of caution, but that part kinda went in one ear and out the other.
So, what happens? Saturday night, celebrating with a bottle of champagne on my very comfortable Living Room couch and...6 weeks later?
WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU'RE PREGNANT? HOW CAN YOU BE PREGNANT? YOU JUST HAD A BABY! ARE YOU SURE? DO YOU WANT ME TO GO GET ONE OF THOSE THINGS YOU PEE ON?
And so, our second daughter was born, 1 year and 1 day apart from her sister. Remember Elaine Bobbit? I was ready to do it myself!
I'm gona leave you with one final thought my brothers. Take care of them. They're all Gods gifts to us.
For more "Helpful Suggestions" click on the following link below to see,
PART 2, "THE BABY YEARS"!
- FIRST TIME DAD? - PART 2, "THE BABY YEARS"!
There is so much to say about this subject of becoming a father, that I felt compelled to share even more fatherly advice!