We are in a period where Jocelyn is almost as equally attached to me as she is to her mother.
This happened last summer as well, I wonder if that has anything to do with it.
I will say that I absolutely love it. I love hearing her call for “Dada” from her crib in the morning. I love her running up to me to have me pick her up. I love seeing her wave to me while I drive away. I love seeing her get excited when I walk into the room.
It is really interesting to watch her lately. It feels like she is learning a dozen new words every day, and she gets so excited when she learns them. She points to every part of my body that she knows the word for, including lifting up my shirt and pointing to my belly button and saying “belly”.
I feel like I am finally sliding into the fatherhood role. It didn’t come easily. For a long time I was resentful that I no longer had the time to do the things I wanted. But then I figured out how to make time for most of those things. I felt like my daughter was taking a lot away from my relationship with my wife. But then I figured out how to put more into it to make it work correctly.
Life is different. There really is no way around that. If we go somewhere we have to account for either having a child with us or make arrangements for someone to watch her. We usually just stay home. But Netflix and VOD and DVR have never been more important to my life.
If we buy something, we have to think about how we can use it with or in spite of our daughter. We bought each other some decent bikes for Mother’s Day/ Father’s Day this year and we have yet to ride them because we don’t have a trailer for Jocelyn yet. So they just sit up in our garage.
If we need to have a serious conversation, or have a romantic night out, or just want to have time with each other we need to wait until she is asleep or with someone else to do it. And frankly, it hasn’t happened much since she was born.
We were never a couple that did a ton, so I think the transition hasn’t been that bad for us. But we were used to seeing the movies we wanted to see, and going out to dinner, and watching movies at home before bed. Now we just have to plan more, which means the movies we see we really want to see, and so on.
For me, the hardest part has been coordinating time to get standard household or daily routine stuff done. If one of us is in the shower the other is with Jocelyn. If one of us is cooking the other is with Jocelyn, etc. And what used to be time where we could get our individual stuff done at the same time now takes twice as long and there is less time for us.
But lately, Jocelyn has been making it so enjoyable; so much so that I can’t even really imagine doing other things. We are in a routine now with the nice weather of eating dinner then going for a walk. She loves the walks. Last night we walked up to the park and when she saw the slide around the corner she got so excited, it was amazing.
She is filling me with new found energy that is making the previously daunting fatherhood tasks seem worthwhile. I enjoy spending hours on a walk with her. I enjoy playing cars with her on the floor. I enjoy getting her up in the morning and putting her to bed at night. I don’t mind starting my daily tasks after she has gone to bed. I don’t mind not watching a movie with my wife as long as we can stay up an extra fifteen minutes cuddling in bed. I don’t mind it at all.
I sure hope that this all continues. I hope Jocelyn keeps calling my name when she can hear me but not see me. I hope that I continue to pour my heart into playing with her and being with her. I hope that it never ends.