This is a guest post by Matt Arnold of daddytwobe.com
Ah, the joys of parenting. Fun, stress, embarrassment and more importantly for today, fear!
No one tells you that it starts the moment you find out you’re going to be a parent, but it does. As soon as you see the positive symbol (or faintly make it out in my case) on the pregnancy test there are a million different things that go through your head. Am I ready to be a parent? How much is this going to cost me? And, am I going to be good at it?
Dads also have to worry about their partner as well. I’m forever thinking about my wife in her pregnant state. I keep telling her to go and have a nap, stop what she’s doing, and am constantly worrying that something she is doing could be affecting the baby. Of course, I’m being over the top, but it is my first and I want it to go well.
I have of course mainly been thinking that I can’t wait until I get to see my little human for the first time and hold him/her. But I’ve got to wait, either 4 weeks or 16 weeks. Let me explain why.
After our first midwife appointment, my partner’s blood test results came back. It turns out that she has a blood group that can cause problems. Now this I find incredibly weird. How can the mother’s blood work against the baby’s? Crazy. It also turns out that she already has a high level of antibodies in her system that is potentially dangerous to the baby. If they get any higher, then we are looking at having the baby at 28 weeks. So now, we are waiting and worrying about these antibodies, and she is being tested every 2 weeks to see if they have risen.
It really is amazing though what the health care service can do. Did you know, that in Bristol, UK, they can determine what blood group the baby is by extracting the babies DNA from the mothers blood. Unbelievable!!
You also have the fear of, will the baby be healthy? Will the baby have any abnormalities?
Deep down, we all have these fears, and it’s OK to have them. You shouldn’t have to feel bad just because you think like this. In fact, we should be talking over these fears with our partners. They will be thinking the exact same thing and by talking them over with each other, you will help to subside them.
We dads also feel like we shouldn’t be asking questions or talking to other dads. We should be the strong ones, the people that our partners can rely on when needed. How can we be that way if we haven’t done it ourselves? Which, when you think about it, is ridiculous. There’s no such thing as a stupid question, ask as many as you need to, and talk to each other.
These 9 months should be filled with memories and happy moments, and I guarantee they will be. Enjoy them, don’t sit there worrying about things that might never happen. If you do get news that isn’t to your liking, then relax in the knowledge that the health care service will do everything it can to help.
Of course, I’m saying all this and I know I should be doing this, but I’m sure I’ll continue worrying. What I am going to do though, is talk through them and then enjoy the last few weeks of my life without a child. Go places that we want to and see things that we haven’t seen yet.
After all, I’m not going to be able to afford to do this later, am I?
My name is Matt Arnold, I’m 30 years old and expecting my first child. I have started up my own blog to share my experiences, worries and thoughts with people and want to show the dads point of view. If you have enjoyed what you have read, then you can find more at: daddytwobe.wordpress.com
Follow me on twitter @daddytwobe