It was on the 15th December at ten minutes to two in the afternoon that I heard the news that changed my life. My girlfriend, Jenny, announced that she was pregnant with our child after performing a home pregnancy test at her sister’s house. My memory of that conversation is a little sketchy. I remember feelings more than words. I remember the anticipation when she came on the phone as I knew she was taking the test. I remember the outright horror that I felt when told the test was positive. I remember wanting to grab her down the telephone line and hold her close to me. I remember the feeling of overwhelming joy and excitement as the news sunk in. I remember not being able to sit down whilst having this conversation. People always say, when they are going to give you news, god or bad, ‘are you sitting down’. I was sat down but I remember standing up and pacing the length of the house whilst having this discussion. I could hear the emotion in her voice. I could feel the emotion in mine. I was shocked, stunned, bewildered, excited, anxious, happy, terrified. I felt like I would burst. I felt like I needed to run outside a proclaim, ‘we’re having a baby!’ to the world!
But instead I put the kettle on and made a cup of tea. It’s funny to think of the things we do when we have been given such news. People can tell you where they were when man walked on the Moon, John Lennon was killed, when the World Trade Centre was attacked. I will always remember that when I was told that I was going to be a Father, the most momentous news a man could possibly hear. When I was told this, my reaction was to go put the kettle on and have a cup of tea.
What was I going to do? How could we afford it? Is the house big enough? What will our parents say? Will it be healthy? Will I be a good Father? Will our relationship suffer? Will our sex life suffer? On that first day every conceivable question, concern and worry ran through my head, but it all came back to that one important all-encompassing question. ‘What the hell am I going to do?’
I’m going to do my best to be the best Father, Parent, Friend, Confidant, Teacher, Entertainer, Companion, Provider, Supporter and Advisor that I can. I’m going to change my life, my goals, my focus for another human being. I am going to do my all to ensure that my child has the best possible start in life and is loved and cherished and protected to the utmost of my ability. I am going to be as supportive as I can be for Jenny as she copes with the physical, emotional and mental changes that this experience will inflict upon her. I want to experience it all as much as I can. The miracle of life. Creation. Two people coming together in love and creating something so special. So perfect. I want to immerse myself in this adventure and feel all the emotions that she does. I will be there for check ups, for scans, for mid-wife visits, for everything. I want to be as close to the events as they unfold as is humanly possible.
I’m going to be a Dad. We’re going to be parents. I will do my very best to share these experiences, the good and the bad, with you, on these pages.