Wednesday, November 16, 2011

100 Days For My Baby Girl: Week 1

When preparing for the birth of my daughter (K2), I was determined to have the same fatherly effectiveness as I had for my 18 month old son (Munch). Only, after thinking about it, I questioned how effective I truly was for him. Sure, I did my share of the diaper changing, the baby swaddling, and the middle of the night soothing, but—in hindsight—was that enough? Did I put up a framed picture of him that 1st week back at work? Did I write down the first time he smiled? Did I set-up a college fund for him? A year and a half goes by fast, but nothing goes by faster than those first 100 days. And with my baby girl, I'm making it a point to do those things that I wish I would have done for my son. Each week, I'll be connecting, appreciating, or communicating things that I didn't do the first time around. And on Day 100, I will be able to look back on the past 3 and a half months and be proud. Proud to be an engaged Dad. Proud to be a proactive Dad. Proud to be a Stunt Dad.

Week 1
The first week of parenthood can be exciting, exhausting, and even excruciating. All of the plans you and your partner had go out the window. Your newborn blinks and you become ecstatic. Your newborn feeds and you become fatigued. Your newborn wails and you become frustrated. Everything is so new and happens so quickly, that the first seven days goes by before you know it. And because of that, recalling some of those key moments can be difficult; which at the time, you never want to forget. So, Week 1 is going to be all about reminiscence, and here are two things I'm planning on doing:

#1: Time Capsule
With K2, I want to recall that first day she entered my life, whenever I want. I want to see it. I want to see the pictures of Wifey and I in the delivery room, K2's name written on the wipeboard, and Wifey holding our baby girl in her arms. I want to hear it. I want to listen to the "delivery playlist" that featured pop songs during the waiting period, dance songs during delivery, and R&B songs when we wanted to chill. I want to feel it. I want to hold on to K2's first onesie, her first booties, and the knitted cap that Grandma sewed. Those are the things I will collect and keep. The things I can see, hear, and feel from that incredibly special and amazingly wonderful day.

#2: Letter to Daughter
Developing a time capsule isn't enough, because all of the feelings, the thoughts, the love going through my body that first week needs to be shared with my baby girl (and hopefully, at a point in the future when she understands it). I want to write it down. All of it. In a letter. A letter to my daughter, just for her. For her to read when she's older, when she's still my baby girl, but so very, very far from being the baby I held in the palm of my hand. When she's an adult, experiencing adult things. The serious, the mature, the frustrating things that comes with being an adult. She can read my letter and remember. Remember how her mother always kissed her twice on the forehead, how her brother poked her tummy over and over, and how I cried myself to sleep that first week because she made me happier than anything else in the entire world.

Memory is a funny thing. It can't always be trusted, can it? In twenty years, I may not remember the look on my son's face when he first saw me, or that Ne-Yo was the first singer he heard when he entered this world, or how his skin smelled like maple syrup. But, with my daughter, not only will I remember it, I'll be able to see it, hear it, and feel it. Whenever WE want to....together.

Are you doing anything for your baby girl that I can copy???? =)

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  1. Good for you! Keep it up!

    Do something nice for Munch, too, please.

    I'm the second born, and I've always felt jealous that my sister has a dedicated scrapbook/photobook, whereas I had none. My mother's "defense" is that I wasn't cute as a baby, with no hair.

  2. Thank you for the note! I'm definitely planning on doing something for Munch as well (actually felt guilty the minute I starting planning this for K2). I was thinking about doing a monthly video series for him that I can share when he gets older. Whatcha think? Any other ideas?