Gonna be a DAD. It keeps hitting me at random times. And when it hits me I am forced to swallow the pit I get in my throat and try not to get all teary. I’m a man. The only time I cry is when I’m dicing jalapenos and onions with karate chops for a delicious dip. (That’s not even true, I have an AMAZING chopper/cutter/dicer thingie-ma-doo that I LOVE. Seriously guys, this thing rocks, but anyways, back to the point)
I have never had an experience where just the thought of it gets my eyes all watery. I am so overwhelmed with love and excitement for this kid already. But it can come at the, not best, of times.
I am a wedding photographer. Well, I am an anything people photographer, but I was shooting a wedding this weekend and it hit me again, while shooting the parent/children dances. The mother/daughter, mother/son and in particular, the father/daughter. I watched as both of them in every dance are overcome with emotion and love for the other. It didn’t help that they had songs like “Butterfly Kisses” playing and all I could think about was holding my kid for the first time. My eyes were getting all watery, my chin was wobbling like an elephant on a tight rope. It was a sudden madhouse of emotion in my head. The people watching hopefully didn’t notice ME…. “I think the photographer is a little unstable. He started crying during the dances . . . . . a little odd, that one. . . .”
It made me realize that while I would love my child regardless of its gender, ( well, regardless of anything but for the sake of my next statement we’ll go with the simple statement of regardless of gender) I am incapable of wrapping my head around how much I would love and in a sense fear for having a little girl, and I think it’s one of the reasons I want a boy.
With a boy, you want them to get out there and experience the world. Fall off the bike, eat the dirt, ask the girl out, “learn to accept rejection, boy, that’s called the harsh reality of life and unless you want to be a pansy your whole life, you better learn to deal with it.”
Toughen them up for the world. It’s rough out there and you have to get ready for it.
But, with a little girl, it seems to be such an opposite concept. I’ll want to run next to the bike to keep her safe, put a blanket over the dirt for all her dolls and keeping her clothes clean and dating isn’t an option until she’s 20 and even then they aren’t leaving the house until I’ve gotten the background check on that boy back from the FBI. (It’s ok, they can leave now, I’ll just wear a dark outfit and sit in the back of the theater with a flashlight ready for that hand to creep up in a stretching position. “HANDS OFF, BUD. . . .”)
I think one of the reasons, maybe subconsciously, that us guys want a little boy is that, at least the way I see it, the fear of that extra emotional need to shield a little girl from the harshness and hurt that is, or can be, life. That’s a terrifying responsibility that you HAVE to fail at if you want your kid to grow up and function in the world. The only way to call it a success is how you allow it to happen; if you manage to make it to certain ages before certain realities occur.
Either way, boy or girl though, I can’t help but get a little choked up every time I think about it. I am going to be a Dad. I have looked forward to having kids since I was like 14. It’s an exciting thought. Yeah, there’s the first year where it’s just changing diapers and being up for, well, what I hear is pretty much the entire year. But then you get a little buddy to do stuff with. Someone who thinks you are one of the two coolest people in the whole world.
See, even now, getting all emotional over it.
Dammit. I need to carry an onion and cream cheese in my pocket at all times.
Co-worker: “What’s wrong with you?”
Me: “Oh, nothing, these onions get me every time”
Co-worker: “You keep onions in your pocket?”
Me: “Never know when you’ll need to make a good party dip…”
Co-worker (walking away): “So weird. . . . I hope he doesn’t take ME hostage when he loses his mind…”
Jokes aside. I am still discovering my excitement. I think I am excited, and then I realize, I hadn’t even realized, and that keeps happening over and over.
But when things around me happen that involve my thinking about it being a girl, I get extra choked up. I have come to the realization that I do want a little girl, even more than I want a boy, BUT . . . I don’t know that I am ready for that extra feeling of responsibility. Boys are hardy. They are more like a test run for parenting a little girl because as a man I can relate more to him, he’ll be his own person I’m sure; but a boy is more like me, and a boy can handle a scratched knee and learn to outwit the kids when they make fun of him at school. A little girl, I’m going to be on the doorstep of those kids’ houses demanding apologies because no one is going to treat my little girl like that.
Every kid gets put on a pedestal by their parents, boy or girl. But, the boys are more apt to fall off, take the pedestal apart and figure it out. A girl will sit there and proudly be.
I’m not ready to have a daddy’s girl. Because I am too emotional I think. I’m never going to be able to say no to my little girl, and she’s going to get spoiled rotten and I’ll happily let her wrap me around her finger.
They say (you know, they, the all-knowing people we learn from on the internet) that when looking for a boyfriend or girlfriend, life-long kinda parter, we subconsciously look for someone like our opposite gender parent. I will want to spoil my little girl because that’s what her future husband should be compared to when she thinks of how she was treated as a kid and wants to be treated her whole life.
If, by now in the post, you are still here, thanks for listening. This is a rambling post for sure, more meant to be a documenting the process and capturing my feelings in the now, kinda thing. It’s part of this blog’s purpose.
So, as I continue to realize the concept that I guess is “A Father’s love . . . “ I’m sure I’ll have a few more posts just letting the world, mainly my family and friends, as well as those looking for a new Dad-to-be’s views and opinions, into my brain. I’ll make a “ramblings” category so you’ll know what you’re getting into before you even start the blog ;) Stay tuned!