Casey Palmer believes fatherhood isn’t for every man, but it’s not as frightening as we think it is.
I wish I spoke newborn.
With “Week Five of the Life” wrapped up, I’m happy to say that fatherhood’s nothing to fear. Sure, there’ll be moments that make you want to pull your hair out (but balding is a very serious problem and this action is not recommended),and sure, your life changes — a lot — but soon enough, you find your groove and things starting falling into place. You learn how to change diapers. You figure out what you need to do to put your kid to sleep. Feeding them from a bottle gets less awkward — nothing in parenting is insurmountable.
But don’t for a moment confuse it with being easy — there’s the inexplicable 3:00 AM fits of hysteria for seemingly no reason whatsoever. Or learning that it isn’t the poop that makes changing diapers difficult — it’s the resistance they put up with inhuman baby strength, even though they’ll feel ridiculously better once their butt is clean. Or there’s always my favorite new game — Act Like I Want a Soother and Then Spit it Out Onto the Floor Five Seconds Later, which leaves parents hilariously scurrying around the home in search for another one before time’s up and the baby starts testing their lung capacity.
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and fall into a rut when you enter fatherhood. Transforming from mere mortal man to the superhuman father that your child relies on is a lot more sudden than the transition to motherhood, and many men (myself included) fail to prepare themselves sufficiently for the things that come ahead.
It’s exciting in the beginning — you get an outpouring of love from family and friends, and you have an entirely new person in your life to love and care for. You can prepare all you want, but it changes everything. Your sleep schedule. Your priorities. Your mindset. Anything’s up for grabs as soon as a baby is in the picture, and you never know how you’ll react.
Fatherhood is definitely an experience, my friends — every baby’s different, and every father is going to approach it a little differently — but it won’t be so different that you can’t learn from others’ experiences.
This post originally appeared on caseypalmer.com
Photo courtesy of Casey Palmer