Last week my wife was sitting in the glider, feeding our daughter.
“How are you doing?” I asked.
“We’re getting there,” she said.
That about describes where we’re at right now. I don’t know that I have much context to add to Erin’s beautifully-rendered post about Abigail’s first month other than to say we seem to unlock new baby achievements every week:
Congratulations! You have achieved Napping After Bottle.
You have found The Mobile That Keeps Her Distracted Long Enough For You To Have A Cup of Coffee.
I’m sorry, parents, but your full night’s sleep is in another castle!
The other day, when I expressed frustration at not being able to describe a new normal, my friend Matt left the following comment:
“I hate to tell you this, but there isn’t really a normal. Once you figure one out, they’re just a little bit older and have already changed again. The real trick is getting better at adjusting to that unpredictability.”
He’s right, of course, and that’s probably what was bothering me. Erin and I know enough to know that once you think you’ve got one aspect of child-rearing figured out, it changes. But it doesn’t stop me from wanting to plant my flag in the sand and say “We figured this out.” While I might know, a month in, how to handle work and baby and oh yeah! my relationship with my wife I might be ass-over-tea-kettle in month two. But at least I know that so it won’t be a surprise when it happens.
I realized yesterday that I’m that guy now.
I’m that guy who, without prompting, will show you a picture of his kid. And with prompting will show you 20.
I’m that guy who tweets about bits of formula getting on his iPad. As if I’m the first person to experience it.
I’m that guy who goes into work late or leaves at a decent hour because it means 20 extra minutes with his kid.
I’m that guy who makes Dad Jokes now. (Actually, I was always sort of that guy. It’s just nice to have an excuse now to indulge my inner Phil Dunphy.)
I’m that guy now. And probably forever.