A couple of weeks ago, I authored an article about not feeling ready to become a father, but my wife was due with the baby soon. I wanted to write a follow up article to talk about how the change has affected me. If you have not read the first article, it might enhance this story to read that article first.
The main question that I pondered in last article was if I was ready to be a father. Now I get to see the answer. At least, I have proven that I can be the father of an infant; we will see how it goes when she is a toddler. Was I ready? Yes, and no. Yes, because my daughter is alive, healthy, growing quickly, and I also am happy and healthy. No, because I feel like I am bad at everything. I thought that things would come more naturally to me. It still feels awkward picking her up and trying to support her head. Changing her diaper is going better than the first one I changed in the hospital (that was stressful), but it sure takes longer than I feel like it should. I am constantly apologizing to my daughter as she cries as I change her diaper or her clothing because I am not efficient at it. When she cries, I put a binky in her mouth, and if that does not work, I am at a loss for what to do. I do not feel good at being a father.
There is an incredible thing in all my self-doubt. I am doing it! I had never changed a poopy diaper, yet I just did it without anyone coaching me how. I had never dressed a baby, yet I am doing it. Yes, it is not as efficient as it could be, but I am still doing it. How am I doing it? I do not have the slightest clue. It is just something that needs to happen, so I do it even though it I am not the best at it. An amazing attribute of humans is that the brain can do things it never has before when the responsibility is placed on a person to perform.
With this new responsibility, I have received a greater capacity. As humans, we do not grow unless we put ourselves out of our comfort zone. I have learned so many new things just in these two weeks that I never would have learned if I had not chosen to become a father.
There are so many lessons that only experience can teach, and I am grateful for these experiences that I am having. That is not to mention how incredibly cute my daughter is. Taking care of her is so rewarding! My wife and I are just smitten by her. Sacrificing for my daughter is very worth it.
Now that I am on the other side of the big jump, I am grateful that I took that leap of faith. I still do not know everything, and there is still much that is hard, but I can see more clearly now why this was an excellent choice. Sometimes we are so scared to do something new or take a leap of faith because we are comfortable with our current life. There is no growth in the comfort zone, and there is no comfort in the growth zone. Because of that, we need to trust those that have gone ahead and taken that leap of faith.
At Believe, we know that we can make needed change in the world. We have already taken the leap of faith to go and make a difference. We would love for you to join us as we grow together and receive a greater capacity to do good in the world.