Hi, my name’s Dave, and at the time of writing this I’m about 31 weeks away from becoming a father for the first time. Wow, that still hasn’t sunk in fully at all yet – I’m going to be a father, my amazing wife, Harriet, is going to be a mother and we’re going to have our very own mini human that is half me and half her… And wholly our responsibility to look after, provide for and raise for the next 18 or so years! Now that I’ve had a moment to let that thought somewhat sink in, let me provide a bit of backstory…
My wife and I met four years ago, and have been married for just over a year. We both love kids, and have always been in agreement that we wanted to start our own family fairly soon after getting married (although exactly how large of a family we would like is an ongoing negotiation).
As we approached our first year anniversary we decided to start trying for a baby, and consider ourselves very blessed that only three months later we discovered my wife was pregnant. It appears that our timing is spot on, as seemingly every week we find out that another set of friends are also currently expecting – so our little kiddo is going to have a whole army of buddies to hang out with once he or she is born! I think the fact that so many of our friends have either recently had their first child, or are currently expecting, has already really helped us in our own first time pregnancy journey. It’s so great to have people further along in the process who can offer insights and support, as well as people in exactly the same stage to share the ups and downs of pregnancy with. At this point I should take a moment to say what an absolute hero my beautiful wife is in all of this. So far, just over nine weeks in, she’s had good days and bad in terms of nausea, aches and pains, extreme tiredness and all the other ‘usual suspects’ – but through it all she’s kept positive, stayed strong, never lost her amazing sense of humour, and has always done what’s best for our baby. This, as far as I can tell, seems to mostly involve my wife being allowed to sleep as much as a person in full time employment is humanly able to. …No wonder she wants so many kids!
As for me, I’m very conscious of the fact that for the next 31 weeks I have the easy job in this pregnancy (this will be especially true at the culmination of those 31 weeks!), and so I’m just trying to do whatever I can to make things as easy and comfortable as possible for Harriet. This isn’t always proving as easy as I’d like, as I often wish there was more I could do to take on my share of the struggles. This whole situation is half my doing, after all!
Thinking further ahead, as if the general prospect of having a baby, and being a father, wasn’t daunting enough as it is – it’s also a little overwhelming when I start thinking about researching and buying things like push chairs, baby monitors, cribs and everything else needed – or wanted – to look after a baby. I’m someone who likes to really dive in and learn as much as I can about the best brands, models and options when making any purchase – but when it comes to baby paraphenalia the choices seem rather endless.
Again, I’m hoping that this is where having plenty of friends in the same position – or further ahead in proceedings – will prove invaluable. Even at this early stage, conversations with mates about what bands we’ve been listening to, or upcoming films we want to see, have turned to “I saw a great deal on this crib mattress the other day…” – which is simultaneously a bit sad but also really exciting that it’s even something that warrants consideration!
For me personally, I’m particularly interested and intrigued by the significantly increased prevalence of technology in baby gear these days. I’m a big technology and gadget nerd, so I’m really curious about how modern technology might both aid, and hinder, our parenting. But that’s something for more discussion another day. I’ve heard it said that no one is ever truly “ready” to be a parent, and I know I certainly don’t feel fully prepared for the life-changing chain of events my wife and I have initiated here… But I can confidently say that my excitement and sheer joy at the thought of bringing a little person into this world (with a large amount of help from my fantastic wife) far outweighs any trepidation or feelings of uncertainty. Plus, let’s be honest – if there’s ever anything I’m unsure of… there’s always Google! Hopefully as I document my thoughts and experiences throughout the rest of our pregnancy it may in some small way help and encouragement others in similar situations. And even if not, then I hope it’s at least an enjoyable read
Written by David Robson