I’m grateful to my children for raising me. I know it wasn’t always easy for them and I often disappointed them along the way, but I’ve always loved them from the moment my first child made her appearance one November afternoon in 1977.
I was 27, and as I look back on that time from the perspective of the years, still a kid myself. A father in the delivery room was a new idea in those days. Before the 1970s, men were kept in the waiting room and away from the delivery.
I recall being placed at the head of the delivery table and they stationed a nurse right behind me. She was there just in case I passed out. That was very thoughtful of the hospital. There was no passing out, and my daughter was born, and the cord was cut. The nurse brought her to me to give her the first bath.
I was terrified as I held her in my arms. Then I looked at her little face and I saw her blue eyes open so wide looking at the World, and at me, for the very first time. She looked right at me, right into my soul and I fell in love and am still in love with her.
I went home the night she was born and could barely sleep. I had to make sure all was ready for her arrival home in a couple of days. I made my checklists and called all who needed to be called. I didn’t know it, but I had just fallen into my first role as a father, the list-maker, and provider.
The first 24 hours she was home was a particular challenge. The second night, my wife and I were lying in bed, and we remarked the baby had been home 24 hours and miraculously, she had survived Bob and Michelle’s parenting.
Time passed, and we decided to have another baby, so my Little Princess didn’t become a little tyrant. My wife got pregnant and presented me with twins.
This was a whole new challenge, but because we had been parents for five years, we took it in stride, and now we had our family was complete.
People often are like their own parents when they become parents themselves. My father was very different as a parent than me, yet I do see a few of his traits in me as a dad…