I want to be a father.
Not today. Not tomorrow. Not next year.
But I want to be a father sometime in this life. And sitting here, watching and listening to others ascend to the powerful and influential role as parent just confirms how much I long to hold a bundle of joy in my hands.
Now I know it’s not all a bundle of joy off the bat, but rather a few precious moments of laughter and giggles sprinkled between crying and diapers and teething. And I can’t seem to wait for this moment, and I don’t know what brought about this baby fever!
I blame my ex. On our anniversary – our first anniversary post break-up – I messaged E saying that I hoped he had a good day and reminded E how much he meant to me. Well, E promptly called me up, informing he had forgotten about our anniversary (nice guy) but still wanted to catch up. E had had a few glasses of wine by then – he’s not adjusting to life in America as well as he could have – and E managed to let the sadness flow.
But E’s biggest frustration stemmed from babies. Many of his co-workers at his elementary school have children ages 2-22 months, and many of them are expecting baby number two! E has since grown envious of them; E wants a child now but is in no such state to provide for another. Realizing this, he washes this away with wine. I tried consoling him, but it really did not do any good. So we chatted a bit more before bidding farewell.
And the next day I awoke with baby fever. Oh my gosh, babies were everywhere or were the talk of the town! Learning about how this little one will be a big sister or seeing how fast this little one has grown on Facebook or hearing a little one take a tumble in Harvard Square on my walk home – babies, babies, EVERYWHERE, bombarding all of my senses and overwhelming me. Yet, like a siren’s song, I’m drawn into their cries and coos and chuckles and melt into a puddle. I want one, and it’s bad. Like, real bad. Like, Kim Kardashian-starring-in-her-own-biopic-film bad. And I know it’s bad, but I can’t seem to shake it.
My parent were 40 when I was born. Obviously thankful for them for giving me life, I still feel like I missed out on a lot given their age. Both of them are the babies in their family, so every one of my cousins have many more years on me. In fact, one of my cousins has a son older than me! Additionally, I never met my grandfathers, and barely knew my grandmothers. And this has created a very tiny but unmissable void within. People always talk of grandpa or grandma in some sense, and I can barely recall half of those people.
So, the pressure suddenly envelopes me to enter fatherhood immediately. I want my children to know their grandparents and their uncle for a long time. I want to play sports with my children whenever I can and not let my age deter me from that. I want to cradle a tiny, tiny person in my hands and know that I will guide, support, and love them forever.
I want to know that I can do these.
But I will just have to sit and wait and welcome all of my friends’ and family’s newborns and get some more practice in before that time comes.