I was nervous and excited to finally get to meet him.
He had been with our family for nine months, yet we weren’t able to really know him.
Moments after he was born he held my finger in his tiny hand.
I got to hold him, wrapped in blankets and snuggled in my arms.
I got to see him lay with his Mom for the first time.
When little Harvey Jack was introduced to his grandparents, aunts, and uncles, I saw the happiness he brought to them.
I got to change his diaper and swaddle him in blankets to stay warm and be comfortable to sleep.
I helped give him his first bath and washed his full head of dark hair.
I got to help his Mom feed him every few hours for the first weeks.
I experienced both physical and emotional exhaustion like I never have before.
Finally, I got to secure him in his carseat and bring him home for the first time.
I get to change many diapers and outfits, and give many baths.
I get to rock him to sleep and wake up to his babbling in the mornings.
Because of all this, I experience life in a much different way than I used to.
He has taught me about what is important in life, and that being his Dad is the best thing I’ve ever gotten to do.
Being a father is both the easiest, and the hardest thing I’ve ever done.
It is hard because it takes a lot of time. It’s easy because most of that time I get to be with my son.
It is hard because it takes a surprisingly large amount of physical energy to watch a baby as they play and learn to be mobile. It is easy because I get to play and have fun with my son and watch him learn and grow.
It is hard because just as soon as you get into a routine and have a “normal” schedule, your baby will start waking up more at night and not taking naps during the day. It is easy because when I am getting up multiple times throughout the night, I get to see my son, feed, change, and snuggle him and be sure he’s alright.
It is hard because the rest of the world doesn’t stop moving, and continues on wether you are ready for it or not. It is easy because my world is now a lot smaller, and the important things are with me right at home.
It is hard because it’s a lot of work that will always be requiring new skills, and will continue for the rest of my life. It is so much easier to get up out of bed when I know my little boy is right in the next room, waiting for me. Knowing that when I peek my head into his room I will see a super big grin on his face because he’s proud of himself for standing up in his crib and is excited to see his Dad.
It’s hard to explain the amount of joy that my son gives me. His smiles when he first sees me in the morning or when I get home from work will never get old. Even when he is sad or doesn’t feel well, just knowing that I can provide him some bit of comfort makes me feel my life is worth so much more than it ever felt before. Then there are his giggle episodes when he goes on laughing for minutes at something he finds funny or smiling at his puppy. Seeing the look on his face as he’s finding new things to climb on and crawl to is precious. The excitement he has from seeing and experiencing things for the first time helps me see things for the first time again. Watching him play with toys and realizing he understands what he’s doing with them is awe inspiring. He plays hard and doesn’t get discouraged when he can’t do something the first few times. He is just an awesome little dude, who I can already tell has a big heart and lots of love. He inspires me to be a little bit more like him.
It’s hard being a father, but it’s easy to do for such an amazing young boy.
Happy father’s day to all the dads out there, especially Harvey’s Grandpas, Rick and George!