A reflection on a dad’s experience in the NICU, and the moment he realized that he was truly a father. [Read more]
Father’s Day elicits a weird type of nostalgic grief for me. That may sound a bit odd, considering I’m not a father (or a man, for that matter) and my father is alive and well and we’ve always had a good relationship. It’s a grief I probably don’t share with my husband, either because he could go the entire year without celebrating a single holiday and never notice. But my husband’s first Father’s Day, in 2013, as he looked at and (restrictively) cared for our 2-pound son, was really the day I realized that fatherhood came knocking loud and hard and rudely at my husband’s door, and how he took it with such stride. He was SO proud of his son, that it almost made the whole new-to-parenthood thing seem somewhat normal.
Looking back, our 103-day NICU stay for our 26 weeker was a blur in the beginning. We coped well; both my husband and I were emotionally in good places (albeit completely exhausted). But one thing that was honestly not on my mind much, and I’m sure somewhat understandably, was how I could have bene helpful and supportive of my husband during this time. So often with new babies, the mom receives the attention and most of the sympathy. Dads are the other parent too, though. And looking back, these are just a couple of things I would give my past-self some advice on. [Read more]