My husband and I used to have this running joke: I would tease that he lactated at the sight of a new baby. Although we were married for four years before deciding to get pregnant, I always thought he was ready just weeks into dating. Now that Hazel’s here, he finally gets to experience his first Father’s Day. To celebrate, I wanted him to know all the things I’m grateful for.
He takes pride in being a good dad
Like many men of our generation, my husband takes great pride in being a good dad. I’ve heard men of generations before mine spout casual and almost careless asides about fatherhood, bragging about never changing a diaper or similar acts of uninvolved parenting. When I hear these, I feel extra gratitude not only my husband, but for the progressing and progressive millennial men who reject these outdated tropes of “masculine” fatherhood.
We share the load
My husband and I both have demanding jobs—it would be impossible for just one of us to take the parenting lead. He has never assumed that I should be the one to take on the lion’s share of responsibilities because I am the woman. More than that, he doesn’t take parenthood for granted. He’s excited to participate in everything from changing diapers to late-night feedings. His enthusiasm means so much to me (although I do wish he would stop dressing her; he chooses the worst outfits.)
He loves Hazel more than himself
There’s no greater feeling than seeing my husband look at Hazel with so much love, and to see her love him back. The first nights in the hospital, while I was too exhausted and sore to move, he changed every diaper and genuinely loved it…except perhaps for one shocking meconium blowout (the photo of which he has promised to share with her first date). It was heartwarming to see how easily she fell asleep on his chest.
Now six months later, I have seen him grow into an incredible father. I see his love for her in everything he does, whether it’s packing her diaper bag with care, or holding her patiently while she practices standing, or making silly sounds until she laughs, or stroking her chubby belly until she falls asleep. I’m so grateful for the bond they share. It makes my heart so full.
Happy Father’s Day to my husband, and to all the Ovia dads out there! Whether you are trying, expecting, or a new parent, we love you.