Baby's taking over! Watch this space. . .
The baby’s not even been born and there’s a couple of months to go but Leigh Sanders is already struggling for space. . .
It’s roughly two months until our little blighter, if they arrive on time, comes into our world physically. But my God, are they already a part of it now. You always complain about not having enough storage space when you are two adults sharing an environment.
If you had realised how much extra you would need to fit in all the gadgets, beds and accessories your little one would bring into the world you would never have opened your mouth to complain in the first place.
Finally, for the first time in my life, those hours and hours smashing blocks into the tightest gaps on Nintendo Game Boy mega hit Tetris have come to good use. You can almost hear that electronic music in your head as you slot the play mat in between the Moses basket and baby bath tub. Then on top delicately balance the blankets and baby gros to fill in the gaps. When you are done, you wonder why you never opted for engineering or town planning as a career choice.
While all this is slightly tongue-in-cheek of course, the building up of the ‘baby collection’ like some crazed superfan amassing a WWE wrestling figure army does heighten the sense of realism and excitement that this is actually happening.
As we have alluded to in previous columns, a lot of what has gone on until now has been talk, particularly for us men. While you are aware daily of the physical changes in your other half and you should, if you have a conscience and a yearning to survive the next few years unscathed, have been supporting her as best you can, you have largely been playing passenger.
Now, it is suddenly with you. Have you completed the shopping list? If you intend for the baby to have their own room, is it ready? Maybe some of you have picked names if you decided to discover the gender – we already have. The time for thinking and contemplating has largely gone. Now your action plan should be well into the swing of things. And if it isn’t, you should probably get a move on before you run out of weekends.
That shopping phase can be a challenge as we’ve said; you want to make sure that you give yourself enough time to make the choices best suited for you and your family.
The other kick we receive at this point to remind us what is actually happening is a literal one.
As they grow inside of mummy our little sprogs are now big enough to let us know they are there. While the mother has been feeling the flips, spins and pokes for some time, it has only just got to the point where we dads can join in the fun and games too.
The first time you feel that as an expectant father is amazing, feeling the life that will soon be your responsibility to help grow to be the best of their ability.
The first kick, poke or nudge, whatever limb your child was sending your way, feels more powerful than any other hit you can take in life.
Knowing they are safe and growing well is a huge relief, and talking to your growing child – often receiving a kick in the face for your efforts – heightens that bond and feeling of incoming joy.
We know these two months will fly by. It still seems a while until D-Day, but rest on our laurels now and we’ll be caught up the creek without a paddle.
There is still the odd thing to buy (and play Tetris with) before we are fully equipped. And based on what the midwife is telling us about our expanding bundle of joy, thank the Lord we took the advice not to buy newborn clothes and went straight for ‘0-3 months’.
Things you never considered, as a man, you would ever be hunting
- Baby moisturiser. You would assume with all the washing and cuddling and caring that baby’s skin might be pretty safe. But no, this is something you will be scouring online for.
- Crib dribbler feeding system. Honestly. Like you have a giant hamster, this thing allows them to get their own milky treats when mum isn’t around via a bottle and metal tube. Just Google it.
- Baby shower cap. You put it on the front part of baby’s head, so when you shower them the water pours away from its face via this rubber umbrella. Simple, but again something we never considered.
- Breast milk storage bags. Call us uneducated, but milk has always come in a bottle or a carton if you like the long life stuff. Occasionally powder. Putting it in a bag has not crossed our minds.
- And, breast pads. Again, something us childess men never considered were needed and available