By DARREN HANDSCHUH
We visited a lot of relatives this year and many of my kin had little ones running around.
As I watched the young parents interact with their infants (ie: changing poopy diapers) I thought, “Man, am I glad that is over.”
However, it did take me back to becoming a dad for the first time and I have to admit entering into fatherhood was rather thrilling.
Parenthood is an adventure not for the weak or the lame or the overly bright.
The adventure begins at the moment of conception (which for the guy is the best part) and doesn’t end until, well, I will have to get back to you on that one.
Many years ago, some good friends of ours had become pregnant with their first child.
Accident, I mean, Lee was a bit of a surprise for them and as soon as our friend, Marcia, learned she was up the spout, she immediately wanted my wife to get pregnant so they could go through the misery, um, I mean, joy of being pregnant together.
My wife and I had agreed to wait until a certain date before we started trying to get knocked up, so we made some vague comment that we will do what we can.
Hey, it’s not my fault our friends had never heard of birth control.
The decided upon date arrived and soon it was I who was looking at the prospect of becoming a dad.
By that time, our friend was just slightly smaller than a 1967 VW Bug as she was nearing her due date.
Watching Marcia balloon up like a float in a Macy’s Day parade, I was pretty sure what was in store for my wife.
At around the eight-month mark, I jokingly said told my wife she so big she was starting to form her own atmosphere.
She jokingly threw a 14-inch butcher knife at me.
I kid, of course. I did say the atmosphere bit, but as my wife and I share the same sense of humour, she found it funny and laughed, but I have to admit it was a smother-him-with-a-pillow-while-he-sleeps sort of laugh.
For all you men out there, before making any comment about your wife when she is pregnant you must be absolutely certain she shares your humour and will find it funny.
If not, be prepared to sleep with one eye open.
And no matter what, not under torture, whippings, wedgies or merciless noogies are you ever to say, “Yes, your butt does look big.”
Her butt could be the size of an ocean-going freighter and your job as her hubby is to keep a straight face (which can be a bit of a challenge) and say, “No honey, you look just like the day we got married.”
Even if you have to grease up her hips so she can walk down the hall the answer is always, “No, baby, you can barely tell you are pregnant.”
She will likely know you are lying because there are mirrors in the house, but she will appreciate your effort to make her feel better.
For the record, I think anyone who expects their wife to maintain a slim and trim figure while she is pregnant is selfish and a moron.
When a woman is pregnant she has to eat for two, she retains water and in general her entire body has to change to accommodate the baby.
The Missus was packing on the pounds like a Kodiak getting ready for a winter slumber, but, like I said, that is what happens when one is pregnant.
Not that I have ever been pregnant. If I was that would make one helluva column, but I am the father of a trio of sproggs and I have stood by my wife as she grew a tiny human in her body three times.
My wife bonded with Junior the instant she learned she was pregnant, but it was not until I heard his heartbeat for the first time that the gravity of the situation sunk in. It was like that for all three and they are moments I will forever cherish.
No matter what a man achieves – climbing Mount Everest, building a space ship, burping the entire theme to Hockey Night In Canada – it fails to compare with a woman’s God-given ability to create an entire human being basically from scratch.
I may have received an award from work, but she made a pair of lungs. It’s kind of hard to compare the two.
Pregnancy also brought with it a complete new wardrobe full of tantalizing garments like preggo pants with the stretchy front piece, great big shirts and my personal favourite, massive granny-style undergarments.
If we were stranded on a deserted island we could have sewn three of those together to make a sail.
Yes, those days are far behind, and in a way I miss them, but not enough to wish they would return.