It took quite a while for us to get to the beginning of our journey in parenthood. There were the false starts. There were the long gaps of waiting in between the many false starts. There were the anxious moments of trying to be parents and then waiting to find out if we were ever going to get there. Then there were the trying periods of getting over the disappointments and trying all over again.
So along the way, while waiting to actually start our journey in parenthood, we accumulated a significant amount of theoretical knowledge on what to expect and do when we do become parents. We received lots of advice from our parents and close friends on what to expect and do when we did become parents. We amassed quite a number of books along the way on what to expect and do when we stepped into parenthood. We read articles online on what to expect and do when we got our baby. Armed with all this knowledge we thought we at least had some basic information on what to expect and do when we finally became parents. We had no idea how far off the mark we were at that time.
In the very first week, we realised that there was the language barrier. Trying to figure out what he meant, was trying. Was the little fellow indicating that he was hungry? Was he trying to say that he wants to sleep? Was he in pain? What was he friend trying to say? No amount of learning a language or a variety of languages could have prepared us for this. Slowly, we somehow begun to understand what his cries meant, most of the time. We managed to figure out which cry meant he was hungry, sleepy or uncomfortable and got it right most of the times. During the times, of which there were many, when we had no idea what he wanted, there was nothing else to do but to just hold him and coo sweet nothings into his ear.
Next, there was our battle with sleep. Our little hero decided that he loved us very much and wanted to spend every moment of the day with us. In the beginning, he started of by waking up and crying almost every other hour throughout the night. Of course, we had to keep him company while trying to figure out exactly what he wanted. I still recall a moment in the early hours of the morning, when utterly exhausted, I asked my wife if it is going to be like this every single night. She replied back in between yawns, hopefully not. Thankfully, little hero realised that he needs to sleep too and brought down his late night and early morning activities to a minimum. Having said that, these days, uninterrupted sleep at night or at any time of the day for the matter is truly a blessing.
Then of course, there was the matter of cleaning the baby. It amazes me how everything on Earth was created with balance in mind. A baby is a gentle reminder of this balance. An amazingly beautiful and soft baby, can sure release an unimaginable amount of waste in a variety of texture, accompanied by an indescribable aroma. Cleaning up after a squirming baby without getting any of the interesting stuff in the diaper on us or the table is not a task for the faint hearted. Anybody who is into researching the next big secret weapon, should definitely look into baby waste laced diapers. It is cheap, natural and easily available in large quantities.
Laundry took up a whole new meaning. It seemed like we had opened up a laundromat at home, minus the coin operated washers and dryers. I remember washing his clothes almost every other day, or was it every day? There was no help to be expected from the washing machine as baby’s clothes must not go through the washing machine. It was back to washing every single piece of the tiny and delicate article of clothing by hand, just as we had done in the age before we had a washing machine. As much as we wanted to be environmentally friendly, we had to concede to using diapers instead of the age-old soft white napkins. It was either that or an extended amount of time washing clothes.
By the end of the first week, my wife and I were exhausted beyond words. The picture above pretty much captured what we so badly wanted. Our baby literally kept us on our toes every moment of the day. Slowly and surely, just as our little friend got the hang of coming out into the world, we got used to having him around us. So, started our journey in parenthood.
P.S.: The featured image of this article was sourced from Pexels