Monday 18 December 1989, this day is etched into my memory, I will never forget the long, lonely, almost painful walk home. Trudging through the dark, rain soaked, early morning streets of Coventry. It had been a long day and night, waking up in a soggy bed, the aftermath of Diane’s ‘waters breaking’ had happened almost 3 days ago now and sleep had become a distant memory.
When I say it felt painful, any pain I felt was against the colour wash of elation, Amy, my ﬁrst child had been born, and as I bring the memory to the fore as I write now, tears of joy are moistening my face. What a fucking wonder, to say it was a transcendent moment for me sounds cheesy, but is an understatement.
I am a 24 year old man as this drama unfolds, my ﬁrst wedding anniversary was yesterday, having spent all my life until a year ago living with my mum. Now, I am a father, what is expected of me now? What do I do now? What am I expected to know? Nothing in my life seems to have prepared me for this moment. I remember feeling similar feelings when Diane conceived and I had managed to get through the pregnancy and birth, but this feels different.
Arriving home didn't help to alleviate this emotional storm. I had just been, what felt like, kicked out of the hospital. Having given birth in the ‘labour ward’ in the early hours of the morning, Diane was being moved to the ‘post natal’ ward and I wasn't welcome.
Hey, I understand that our beloved NHS ‘has’ to have rules, a man’s presence on a post natal ward was probably difﬁcult to manage back then and this was long before the even more stringent rules that are now in place in many NHS maternity hospitals. But in that moment I felt alone and in the wrong place. My partner and baby needed me right? Well, that’s how I felt in that moment, and to cap it all the fucking Indian take away had long since shut.
A lot of water has pasted under the parenting bridge since that bleak coventry early morning. Six children, ﬁve of which were born within 6 years, and nine grandchildren later, I sit reﬂecting now on over 24 years of experience, having juggled, fought and lived through many parenting crisis, I’m ready to share what I have learned with you.
The early months of being a father to a new born baby where ﬁlled with many questions and quite frankly worries:
And the list could go on.
Over the coming weeks and months I am going to be offering you answers to these questions, but for today I have included a video which includes information which is foundational to your life as a father.
What every father needs to know……….
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and much more!
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