Little Miss and I took a trip together while her daddy was at work to get him a surprise special cake for Father’s Day. Naturally, when he walked in the door that evening, the first thing she yelled was: “Daddy, I have a surprise for you! It’s a cake!”
Parenting Lesson #2411: Never share secrets with your toddler.
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That was the beginning of my Father’s Day post that I started last weekend. I was hoping to complete it by Sunday, in honor of My Guy’s special day. I would post it at midnight and he would be greeted by this post in the morning in his Inbox. Except that never happened.
This post got lost somewhere between sleep deprivation, delicately balancing a toddler and newborn, trying to manage a household, recovering from labor, raging post-partum hormones, and the good, bad and ugly of family life. And I feel awful that things didn’t go the way as planned, that I wasn’t able to get this out on time. Especially when the person who so deserved this, really deserved this. Actually he deserves so much more than this.
Why? Let me count the ways: He works long days and longer nights to provide for his family, so he’s no stranger to sleep deprivation; he races home to make sure he has a few minutes to play “upside-down” with Little Miss, bathe her and put her to bed with her favorite books; he props me up with pillows as I’m nursing because he knows I’m never good about my own comfort and posture; he brings me water because he knows my thirst better than I do; Thumper doesn’t see him much as her eyes are not often open throughout the day but he still finds a way to bond with her, even if it means catching a cat nap with her or having her in a baby carrier (Moby) as she sleeps while he works into the wee hours of the night.
Etc. etc. etc.
To be perfectly honest, this first month of post-partum stress has been kicking my ass. I’m someone who likes to be on top of things and rarely admit when I’m not. But I think I should come clean and say that I feel like my head is barely above water these days. The more I try to carve time for myself to rest or to write, the more elusive those moments are, which then frustrates me.
I miss quiet days for reading and long stretches of time at night for writing. Now I am lucky if I find the time or energy for the 140 characters on Twitter, let alone books and blogs. When I try to make time, someone’s needs are suddenly greater than mine, or when I finally do find a rare moment, my exhaustion overwhelms me, where stringing two sentences together feels like running a marathon.
And My Guy knows all of this. And in spite of his very full plate, he is determined to support me through these difficult days. As a dad and certainly as a partner, he is awesome in more ways than I can count (hence the etc. etc. etc.). Until they come up with International Domestic Partner Day (hint hint Hallmark) there really isn’t a day that celebrates what he truly means to me.
So on this ordinary day, I’d like to honor this man who is anything but. I may not have been on time with a Happy Father’s Day post but when I think about it, with him in our lives, it’s Happy Every Day.
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What did you do on Father’s Day? Do you have a family tradition? On another note, what were the postpartum weeks like for you? What was surprisingly hard or easy for you with a newborn?