Becoming a dad
Hooray, I am a new Dad
1. Cutting the cord
After Matilda was born, she was immediately placed on Stacey’s chest, I cut the cord (which was much thicker and tougher than it looked), and Matilda impressed me for the first time. We had produced a little person able to run every basic function of life on her own. I think I was still in shock from the labour and becoming a Dad, but cutting the cord is something that I am very glad that I did. Away from the camera, I bawled for a few seconds, I’m not exactly sure why – relief and respect for these two beautiful women, I think.
2. Telling the waiting throng
I quite like being centre stage. One of the favourite walks in my life was the 50 metres from the delivery suite to where the 20 relatives and well-wishers had gathered. They were desperate for information. Knowing all was well, I chose to draw the moment out – ever so slightly.
“All three of us are doing well…”
“I would like to announce…”
To which everyone burst into celebration. What a moment.
3. Overwhelmed – Sleeping at the hospital on the first night
Completely exhausted at the end of the birth day, and on reflection, I probably had the least exhausting day out of the three of us; Matilda screamed her head off for what seemed like hours. That was the closest I have come to being unable to cope, during the whole process. Thank goodness for the brilliant nurses who helped us out (i.e. completely take over) in the hospital that night.
4. The protector – Driving the family home
I recall being very defensive about a car that was tailgating and driving extremely dangerously behind us out of the hospital car park. Only when I saw the disabled sticker and noticed the driver was 80 years old and that I was driving at 14km/h did I notice how cautious I was being. I upped the pace to about 20km/h for the rest of the drive home, apologising to 3-day-old Matilda after every bump in the road.
Now, I found that having a baby seemed to unlock some maternal part of me that allowed me to know everything I needed to, to keep our little girl alive. MEN DON’T HAVE THIS and I think Troy knew it. Everything we did for the first time, put the baby in the car, change her clothes, give her a bath, Troy would defer to me and my newfound knowledge took over. So much so, that when Matilda was about 6 days old I decided to go back to work for a day and let Troy bond with his daughter. I came back at 5pm to find Matilda screaming, nude and poo everywhere, and the explanation was? “Everything was fine until 5 minutes ago”. We kept this weekly Dad’s day up, and now Troy and Matilda have their own routine that works for them.