I’m often asked what does it feel like to be a Dad. I can not answer it simply.
To help answer it, I have to ask the question of “when do you become a Dad?”. Do you become a Dad when you decide with your partner that you want to bring a new life into the world? Is it when you first find out you are expecting a son or daughter? Or is when your son or daughter is born? Perhaps it is a stage after your son or daughter is born and being a Dad is a mindset? It could be at any stage.
There are many Dad’s out there who do not want to be a Dad, they do not take responsibility for their children. In my eye’s, I do not believe you ever become a Dad with a viewpoint like this and thankfully, this is not the norm.
Finding out I was having a child was a wake up call to me. I felt an overwhelming sense of joy and fear all at the same time. I was thinking about the simple things like what if I can not settle him or her? The more complex things like how I will be able to provide for my son or daughter. Will I get everything they need in time?
After this initial panic however, I settled down to process this amazing experience. There was a part of me that still doubted it was real and I do not believe, I thought of myself as a Dad. Off-course, we both set off on making sure we were going to be ready for this addition to our family unit and we both kept it secret.
The time it all hit me though, and I felt I was going to be a Dad was when I first saw my daughter for the first time on the scan (we did not know she was a she though at this point). Seeing her move, seeing her little heart beat, seeing this little unborn life with a full road laying ahead of her was amazing. It was like hitting a brick wall at 100mph with a realisation of “shit, I’m going to be a Dad!”. Truely amazing.
This does not fully answer however the question of, what does it feel like to be a Dad. Yes, the feeling is an overwhelming sense of emotion but these emotions were ever changing.
Fast forward to the point that our beautiful daughter was born. Yet even more waves of emotion. It is a time I will never forget though never describe due to not knowing the words (great for a blog post). Here was this new life, here in our arms for the first time, an undefined journey in front of her which will be guided by 2 loving parents, both knowing there would be up’s and down’s, tantrums and laughs.
This does however help answer the origional question at least for me. What does it feel like to be a Dad? My answer, ever changing, a roller coaster of emotions with a sense of enormous responsibility. The joy of knowing you are trusted to guide this life with unconditional love and support. It gives you a new sense of purpose. But can I choose one word to describe it? No!
What do you think it feels like to be a Dad? We would love to hear your thoughts below Dad’s.