Father Of The Blog

A Journey Through Fatherhood and Parenting

Father of the Blog

Old Hat

Originally posted on BabyCenter.com 01/16/08 

A month ago, Kim and I were cleaning out our bedroom closet, packing up the non-essentials getting ready for the move to our new house. During the closet clean-sweep I found an old favorite Blues (Hockey Team) hat. Fashioned in the ball cap variety with fading team colors of blue, red and gold, the billed still curved tightly with greasy finger prints all over it. The old hat had been stuffed into a corner and forgotten. I wore that hat daily throughout my college years and even up until Kim and I bought the house that we were now getting ready to sell. I put the old beat up hat on. I figured that it would slide right on without any adjustments and fit perfectly, but I was wrong. It was tight, chaffy and felt unbroken, kinda like new, when I first tried it on so many years ago. Kim asked me if I need to keep the bruised hat. If not, then to get rid of it, but instead I stashed it deep within the box we were packing, un-wanting to give it up and hoping one day it may fit again.
Under Contract
Speaking of our move, we have another contract and this time around we agreed on a price. So now we are waiting for the buyer’s financial commitment and awaiting the outcome (the bad news) from the building inspector. If all goes smoothly we will be handing over our keys to new occupants in five weeks. Olivia and Hailey mention the move every day now “Are we moving to Bubie’s today?” It will be good for them, more room to play, quiet cul-de-sac and a big back yard.
A day? A Week!
It has been one week since the birth of Elizabeth Rose but it feels like one long day since I have yet to sleep for more than three hours at a stretch. I’m on paternity leave and wishing it could be permanent although by next week I think I will be ready to get back to work. There is only so much laundry, vacuuming, dishes, and clean-up I can do before pleading domestic insanity. Today was Elizabeth Rose’s one week check-up and I took her to see the pediatrician. My baby is doing great. Her hips look good, (something breech babies have issues with), she has topped her birth weight by .1 of an ounce and besides frequent wet-burps during feedings she appears to be in spectacular health.
Shopping With Daddy
After the doctor put the seal of approval on Elizabeth Rose, we had a little excursion to Babies R Us for her first shopping trip. She can’t even talk yet and she cleaned me out. A cute purple on purple polka-dot zip-up sleeper, the girl has to have some new clothes. A couple pink hoody-towels, the hand-me-down towels are scratchy and frayed. A girly colors pack of face cloths, the hand-me-downs are grotesquely stained and have lost their fluffiness. Three new 9oz Vent Aire plastic bottles and a pack of old-school Gerber nipples, she collapses the nipples that come with the Vent Aire bottles and yes I know where she should have the nipple in her mouth. A new Boppy sling, our old sling was once willed to my sister Rachel, been through countless infants and its original color no longer recognizable, not to mention that it is back-wrenchingly uncomfortable. And a manly, well as manly as you can get for a diaper-bag, Columbian brand diaper-back-pack, my old pack has had it, the zippers unfunctionally tattered, the stretchy mesh on either side no longer able to hold its contents and a shredded gaping hole in the center divider. A ten minute showing of Elizabeth Rose’s new goodies ensued upon our return home and then Kim asked, “Did you get the lollypops you promised Olivia and Hailey [from doctor’s office]?” No, I forgot to grab a couple free lollies for my two big girls and spent a fortune on Elizabeth Rose, I thought I was being a good dad, but I failed.
Old Hat Feels New
Much like my old grungy Blues hat, I figured Elizabeth Rose would automatically fit, I wouldn’t have to make any adjustments and I could keep parenting, business as usual. I have forgotten many little things since the last go around. It took a week to get my diaper changing technique down and I’m rusty slow still getting peed on. Once a master, I forgot how to swaddle, I can’t seem to figure out my old method and in the mean time, rolling her up like a burrito. Her first bath which Olivia and Hailey eagerly helped with, I forgot to uncork the infant tub while rinsing off Elizabeth Rose nearly submerging her. Every child comes with a whole new set of challenges as well as the same old routine demands. They create a completely different dynamic in the family and unlike my old Blues hat Elizabeth Rose can’t be tucked away for future considerations. I have to get comfortable with my beautiful delicate infant and figure out how to make her fit. But it won’t take long, it is old hat.

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