A Few Observations for Dads (and Future Dads)
Justin: I promised Sara during labor that she could rest for the next 12 weeks. As such, I am going to give her the week off from the blog. I will let her speak to the process of labor and tell the story of little Augustine’s arrival next week (there were some pretty intense moments). Instead, I thought I would offer a few observations as a father.
1. It is love at first sight!
One of my biggest fears was how I would react to the arrival of a baby. Sure I was excited, but not excited like Sara. As a guy, I have never been all that drawn to babies, nor had an overwhelming urge to hold them.
I have been told many times that it is different when it is your own, but I wasn’t 100% sure I believed it. However, when I hold Augustine in my arms I find myself looking down and uttering the words, “I love you so much!” It has been this way from the beginning.
2. Simple things are amazing!
The first night in the hospital I had to hold Augustine practically all night to keep him calm so Sara could sleep. I remember sitting in the darkness, holding him, and just listening to him breathe. I don’t think I have ever heard a more beautiful or peaceful sound.
Last night Augustine had the hiccups. It was the saddest and most funny thing I have ever seen. He was lying so peacefully and then every so often his whole body would squeak and shake. His reaction of surprise at each hiccup couldn’t help but make you laugh.
3. I am incredibly proud of my wife! She is a hero!
I am incredibly proud of Sara. During her labor she showed a depth of strength that I am sure she didn’t even know she had. I am so glad that I married HER! I know there were several moments when she was on the brink of giving up! Yet she pushed through her fears and was not conquered because of love for Augustine. Her actions were a testament to love!
4. Your support matters!
I used to joke with Sara that I wished for the “good old days” when the dad paced in the waiting room as he waited for the doctor to come out and tell him the news.
Dads (and dads to be) your support matters during the pregnancy and it matters in the delivery room. Throughout the labor I couldn’t help thinking, “I can’t believe we used to make women go through this alone” or at least without their dearest loved one by their side. After the experience this would just seem cruel.
5. Don’t do it alone!
I recommend asking for support of others during the labor and delivery. Even though we made an effort to prepare and practice, Sara and I decided to have a doula present. It was the best decision we ever made.
Labor and delivery is emotional. Most of my time was speaking with my heart, not with my head. Our doula was a great support for both of us. She provided a strength and calm which I also needed to be effective in encouraging Sara.
6. A bit of gratitude!
Finally, thanks to all those who have been praying for us through the entire pregnancy and this includes all of those who have shared our story through the blog. Your prayers were necessary and got us through several intense moments in the delivery room!
All is well that ends well and I can’t think of any better ending then a happy, healthy, baby boy! I love you Sara and I love you Augustine!