Thursday, May 29, 2014

on these two, and letting david be a daddy

This is something I have been mulling over in my mind for a few weeks, but am never quite sure how to articulate exactly the way I want. I will do my best,  because it is important, and something I want to remember.

McKenzie wakes up around seven each morning.  I hear her starting to talk from our bedroom, so I go and scoop her up and bring her into our bed to nurse her.  When she wakes up, she is nothing short of HANGRY and if she doesn't see some boobs in thirty seconds flat we will all have hell to pay.  But once she has had enough milk in her to start thinking about other things, she immediately leans her head wayy far back to see if daddy is laying next to us.  Sometimes he is, and sometimes he has already gotten out of bed, but she always checks.  And if he is there, her first smile of the morning spreads wide across her face.  She looks at him like he is pure magic.

These two.  I knew from the beginning they would have something special going on, and I know it is only just beginning.  I love it.  I am sure I will have moments where I am all, "I spent all day caring for you and now all you want is daddy?"  I hear this happens.  I am sure I will feel it on those long days.  But most of all, I love that david adores his little girl.  I love that he secretly wanted a daughter from the beginning.  That he already talks about defending her and protecting her as she grows older. 

But I have these moments where I feel like my mama instincts and the way I do things is always right.  Like, are we sure he really knows how to give her a bath if I am not hovering over them?  Doesn't he know I lay down two towels for extra comfort and won't she just fall apart if he does it differently?  Am I the only mother who has these thoughts from time to time?  Maybe I am crazy, but I have a feeling I am not alone.

Thankfully, I do feel like this need for control has subsided over time.  I recognized it in myself, and I fight it.  because it is really important to fight it.  Sure, I am the parent that is staying home with kenz all day and so, naturally, I will pick up on a few things that he may not.  That doesn't mean he can't find his own way.  That his daddy instincts are not as strong as my mama ones.  And really, the more I correct or hover or take over, the more likely david will start experiencing feelings of inadequacy and insecurity.  No, I really really do not want that.

The other evening I posed this absolutely terrible question to david, but we ended up talking about it for a quite a while.  What would you do if I died tomorrow?  It is the sort of question you really aren't suppose to bring up at the dinner table, but it was sort of interesting for both of us to answer.  And guess what I came away thinking?  Yeah, they would be okay.  Not in the sense that I am not needed, or they wouldn't be devastated, or whatever.  But really and truly, david and mckenzie would be alright.  

Does that make sense?  It's a really morbid thing to think about, but it was so good for me in such a strange way.  David became a daddy the same day I became a mama.  We are both learning and growing and frankly, a lot of the time, we are just winging this whole parenting thing.  But that's the beauty of it all, and we both need to let the other one fully discover their role.  We need to let each other make mistakes and celebrate successes and learn from each other, because we both have a lot to learn.  and we both have a lot to offer.

ps. this article says it all, only better.  Thanks for sending this, kels!


Melissa Coffey said...

Well. Now i am choking back a few tears at my desk. beautifully and intimately written, Em. Love you all, so very much.

picklesandchapstick said...

It's very difficult at times letting dads be dad. This was a very beautiful post! *hugs to you mama*


KLantz said...

I've been thinking a lot about this as we get closer to welcoming baby...and then I read this blog:
"Now let him do bath time the 'wrong' way and go sit and drink a Dr. Pepper or something." Haha