One year of Fatherhood.
Charmaine and I can unanimously say that the last 12 months have come and gone at an amazingly rapid pace. Just a few days ago Levi turned one so yesterday we celebrated it with his very first birthday party.
A question I have heard asked is how I feel as a father after 12 months? It is one of those questions that when asked by someone like an older curious acquaintance produces a kneejerk response of “good”. What else is there to say? I think there a social expectation to wear a mask of confidence and joy when it comes to being a new father/mother, even if the first child has stretched you and your relationship to a breaking point. Having said that I truly feel that the last 12 months have been overall an amazing revolutionary time in my personal life. The journey had its bumps and rough patches, but when you zoom-out the overall picture is worth framing. We have been lucky not to experience to any significant degree the horror stories of babies not sleeping, not eating or falling into serious illness. There was the first month when Levi would scream his lungs out for what appeared to be no reason (we later found out he was lactose intolerant and the milk was hurting him). What was worse is that when I tried to rock him, he would push away from me with his legs into my stomach. I recall being very upset and taking it to heart, that here I was barely functioning with a few hours of sleep, and trying to help you, and yet you scream into my ear and kick my stomach! Of course it is irrational to attribute any malice to a one month old, but when your sleep deprived you are not rational anymore. I mention that little incident because I have a whole new degree of empathy to new parents who have to rough it out with difficult babies.
But all of those horrible incidents gets smoothed out when you have moments such as when your son walk up to you, puts his head on your arm and gives you a hug. Or when you tickle him and you hear the sweetest pure laughter.
I look forward to see Levi grow and develop more in the next 12 months. I attached a poster Charmaine and I made for his birthday that lists some facts about him.