So you’re going to be a Father?
The announcement was quite a surprise to me. We were just in the run up to getting ready for our honeymoon when my wife took ill. We were quite scared because we thought we’d lose all of our honeymoon money so we called up the out-of-hours doctor and tried to get a solution to the problem quite quick. “Is your wife pregnant?” The caller on the other end said which took us by surprise because we hadn’t even considered it. So I took a stroll down to the shops to get a pregnancy test; we were to call 111 back if she wasn’t
2 weeks gone Natalie was. It smacked us in the face, and not because we didn’t want a child right then but because we weren’t actively trying. It just, well, happened. So after I recovered from the shock (which was about 10 minutes) I started to feel very proud. Very proud indeed
You see when a man gets his woman pregnant it’s an achievement to him. If you take a roll back to his late teens and early twenty-somethings years you will find lots of joking between friends that he’s a failure, a dud, ejaculates empty pods of nothingness. It’s frequent boy banter in the changing-rooms / pubs / bars. So when the time comes and your partner becomes pregnant, all that fear washes away. It’s harmless banter but there’s still that small fear of doubt edged into the back of your mind.
So you feel proud. Proud to be a MAN. You’ve just successfully reproduced your family genes onto another generation. And you had fun doing so. As a successful reproducer you want to shout from the rooftops, “I GOT MY PARTNER PREGNANT, I’M AWESOME!!” this is usually why you’ll find men passing out whisky’s and cigars out in the pub / bar when they hear the news. It’s a very manly thing to do, and it’s a proud thing to do too.
After the achievement ebbs away you slowly begin to doubt yourself, or at least I did. You see my Dad was an absolute w**ker. He didn’t involve himself much with me, and if he did it was purely for his own gain. So I REALLY questioned myself. Then I sort of brushed it under the carpet – it’s 9 months away! Lots of time to evaluate and introspect.
It’s interesting the way your friends and family react. Your friends slap you on the back and tell you how much of a man you are, and family are really proud too. It can be at times a very emotional experience at the beginning; overwhelming almost.
The next nine months are just the beginning, and if you think those were difficult just you wait until your little bundle of joy is born. But the nine months run up to the birth I think can make or break couples and I also think you can tell the calibre of man that you are too. I’ve known guys that sat in the pub for most of the prelude to the birth, and their partner has had to come down and get them.
I used to find it desperately cute how Natalie would cycle through certain cravings and that she absolutely must have them or the world would end. I had been known to empty the shelves of mints at the local store and certain biscuits (which name I can’t remember). I was also my wife’s part-time hand maiden and would do all the cooking and washing up, every day. I actually really liked that because it gave me the feeling that I was taking care of her in her time of need.
As a man that absolutely knew nothing about babies there was a certain amount of preparation to be had before they pop their heads out and say hello; I knew nothing of this and I did feel a bit of a big galoot-dunce. I think women prepare for this situation all their life; men on the other hand sit there playing with their toys until one day it happens and they’re like, “uh, wtf?!”. So Natalie sat in the driving seat with picking hospital baby clothes, muslins, showers, mittens, hats and all the other baby stuff that had to be prepared. In fact, I couldn’t believe the amount of prep work that had to be organised before the big day. We did it slowly, over 9 months.