As you may or may not be aware, my husband and I became proud parents to our daughter Aurelia a few weeks ago. She's already a daddy's girl, her face lights up when he walks into the room and she reserves all her special smiles just for him So here's how Nick is finding fatherhood so far.
Nick over to you.
My first fathers day…
I’ve been a dad for just over 6 weeks now, so fatherhood is a brand new feeling for me. The only way I can describe the experience so far is heart melting and exhausting, whilst at the same time, scary as i’m responsible for a tiny human! But I wouldn’t change it for the world.
I’m Nick, as you’ve probably guessed. I’m a loved up daddy to the newest member of Deepa Rodrigues Photography – Aurelia.
Deepa mentioned in a previous blog that it’s been a journey for us both getting to this moment. The moment Aurelia was born and was given to me for the first time – no words can describe it. I wasn’t sure if I was meant to cry, smile, say hello, or support her head! I think in the end I did a combination of them all (yes I’m sure you can imagine what that face looked like!).
Father's day was emotional. It's not really a day you appreciate until you become a father. It was just surreal. I pinched myself Sunday morning as I couldn’t believe that I’ve actually got a daughter!
Simply put – Nothing prepares you for it, and I should know, I’m a project manager and it’s my job to plan!
So what did we do? Well Aurelia/Deepa treated me to a “meal”. Deepa and I discussed what we should do and in the end the most logical decision was a quick pit stop at Five Guys and then get Aurelia home to some happy milk. For the first time in 6 weeks, we enjoyed a sit down meal together!
Thank you for an amazing first fathers day - I’ll never forget it.
So how’s the whole experience of fatherhood been so far…
Before Aurelia was born, my mind was running wild with scenarios of Deepa going into labour, so much so that I used to wake up in the early hours of the morning dreaming that Deepa had gone into labour – as you can imagine, that went down like a treat.
I’m not normally a person who gets nervous or scared, so I prepared for it as I best know how – a term I stole from the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson, my interpretation of “Squeaky bum time”
“Squeaky bum time” in my world is a process of digging in, grafting and prepare, prepare, prepare. ***Disclaimer this next part involves a 2.5ft stuffed penguin!***
I’ve heard stories of parents to be purchasing dolls and such items to help prepare them for the next chapter in their lives. My take on this was slightly different.
It dawned on me out of nowhere, Penguino is literally the same size if not slightly bigger than a new baby – Perfect…Its squeaky bum time! I ran scenarios over and over again in my head – roll playing where the baby will sleep, how can we feed him/her in the early hours of the morning, whilst at the same time scrambling to change a nappy, to how can I turn on the light with a baby in my arms…you get the jist.
There was logic to my madness and it worked!! It involved a complete remodel of our bedroom, buying smart light bulbs, linking up to an Amazon Echo and a few visits to Ikea. So future dads to be – Get creative!
Birth/Labour was an experience - Let's just leave it there. I’ve never felt more proud yet helpless in my entire life. To all mums out there - you are amazing.
This is the moment Aurelia layed on my chest, grabbed my hand and opened her eyes…
Welcome home Aurelia…
The day’s finally here - I was now a dad of 8 hours and got to bring my baby home!!! Everything just felt right.
Paternity leave was, simply put, too quick! I almost felt like the Flash. You’re just buzzing. You don’t know what you’re doing. You want sleep, you want to eat, you’re excited and to top it all off, its a sudden realisation that your now responsible for another human being.
I opted for 2 weeks paternity but in future I would seriously consider taking up shared parental leave. 2 weeks just isn’t enough, but I’m glad I had at least that. The time spent with Aurelia was priceless.
Going back to work, well that's a whole other blog post!
Being married to a family photographer, you can imagine the importance that photography plays in our life. However I’ll be the first to admit, I’m probably one of Deepa’s biggest critic and sceptic of getting professional photos. The whole process is just a bit alien to me. Now that I’m a new dad I have to admit (with a sense of embarrassment), I’ve never been more wrong!!
The simplest intention of Deepa’s photography is to create lasting memories. I’m so glad Deepa insisted on a maternity shoot and making me carry an additional hospital bag with a camera, lens and tripod!
Now that I’m 6 weeks in, I look back at these photos, before and after Aurelia was born and it brings a tear to my eye. I can’t believe she’s actually here!!! Looking back, the maternity shoot was in its effortless form the most purest, honest and magical thing you can imagine. We looked fresh faced and Deepa was glowing as a radiant mummy to be. But the most amazing memory Deepa captured was the bond we shared with Aurelia before she was even born. The joy and look on both of our faces was priceless.
They do say hindsight is a wonderful thing, but so is a photo!
From that moment on, I just couldn’t wait for Deepa to get her camera out. Aurelia is growing up so quickly in just a short space of time. Her features and personality are developing on an almost daily basis. I just want to cherish these memories forever and ever.
If you’re considering a photoshoot for your new arrival – Do it! I promise you won’t regret it!