Holy shit. I’ve been a father for a week!
And, the padawan is not only alive … it is thriving so far.
And, I’m in shock and awe. Not because it is alive and thriving but because it is living up to its namesake in so, so many ways and my wife and I are, as first time parents seeming to adapt to figuring it out so well.
As was mentioned before, we were keeping the gender of our offspring a surprise so referring to them became a game in (pro)noun management of which one of the winning nicknames became “padawan” after the Star Wars reference for “learner” as I’ve mentioned before too.
In all honesty, the progress of the last week is a combination of my wife’s poise, my determination and the support of our family and friends as much as it is padawan’s adaptability to the ex-womb environment (ex-womb sounds suspiciously like a gore-grind band…maybe I need to investigate this). Nonetheless padawan is indeed progressing.
Every parent, I’m sure, likes to believe their offspring is…
…the greatest being ever. And, I’m sure for many of them their offspring is. Ours is simply the greatest offspring we could have produced. How they will compare to the great existence of “humanity” it is both not within my knowledge base and far too early on to contrive so I tend to stay away form useless hyperbole when I can.
We know the padawan is good looking because basically all newborns are. And, even if they were less than pleasant to the socially acceptable norm it’s considered good form to act otherwise if for no other reason that the old wive’s take jinx about the insulting of the looks of a baby coming back to haunt your own family’s children or your own aging later in life (or both).
We also know the padawan is smart because basically most all newborns are as well. They seem to lean both by innate understanding and from that of cues from the world around them.
But, one thing I can tell you is they are definitely a quick learner and thus apt to the padawan namesake. It’s the picking up cues from mom and dad and our visiting family that really seems to stand out for me.
Honestly, I was a little worried having two parents who are both stubborn and anti-social that their disposition would be overly reflective in the padawan. I suppose there are more than ample examples of it so far even if many of those we’re superimposing on normal actions.
However, by the same token both parents are life-long nerds who sport multiple degrees and an endless desire for continued learning. I suppose there are more than ample examples of it so far too even if many of those we’re assuming they’re above the normal actions.
This latter point about learning though is important to us because we would like to focus on things that the padawan can control rather than those they seemingly cannot.
So, to be where we are thus far is pretty reassuring. Not because we’re expecting the next Nobel winner or SCOTUS justice or even Princeton/Yale graduate as of yet, but because as like every parent we just want to know we’re doing the right things to ensure our offspring’s ongoing progress and they seem to be progressing in amazing ways.
Heck, they are basically making nighttime feedings both pretty reliable (must take after dad’s desire for routine) and tolerable (must take after mom’s desire for homeostasis) while using the daytime to enjoy the company of family and friends (some of the few social interactions us as parents can handle) and embrace quiet time in the presence of the spring bloom in nature (must take after dad) and not living up to the 80’s anthem by Slaughter (“Up all Night, Sleep all Day”) quite yet.
I couldn’t be more grateful or thankful for the opportunity to have spent the first week at home with my wife and newborn too. I am very, very fortunate to be able to combine time off with the flexibility of working from home (and in that, also time shifted on much of what needs to get done work wise) so that I could take the time to bond with the Padawan and support my wife and take the pressure off our friends and family to feel like they need to be around every minute of every day (although, they still have been, which, is a blessing and a curse if ever there was an excuse for that duality).
There were a tonne of things I think both of us (and our family and friends) had legit concerns about with us being parents but what padawan has taught us is that learning is a mutual endeavour and they’ve done an amazing job learning both from and about us over the last week that it’s really made being first time parents easier than the nightmares portrayed in the media and the stories we’d built up in our heads between us.
Just like my experience becoming a husband to my wife, I couldn’t be happier about being a dad in the last seven days so far. It’s been enlightening, invigorating, challenging and of course absolutely crazy. just like about everything else I’ve attempted over the last many decades.
And, just like everything, I couldn’t have gotten through the first week without both asking for and being accepting of the help that was available to me. Even the less-than helpful help was still helpful nonetheless.