Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Fatherhood Becomes the Husband

One of the factors that helped me make my mind up marry V was his way with children. (Yes, it's true that works for most women. Certainly does for me, because I always wanted a family and never meant to take on the task of raising one all by myself!) He does get along well with them, and it shows in his handling of the WB.

I was lucky enough to be in a nursing-home which allowed the babies to be kept in a cot alongside their mothers' beds, so WB was always accessible to all visitors, including his father. For somebody who wanted a daughter and refused to think of a son, I must say V gets along with The Bhaeblet only too well. Far too well, I think sometimes, because even this early I'm afraid WB shows signs of being the congenital MCP his father is. The day is not too far away when they gang up on me, I suppose.

While we were still in the nursing-home V learnt to clean and change him. Within a week of our coming home V had worked out ways of soothing him when he got cranky at night. I would have been jealous perhaps, were I not busily sleeping.

But it's true that apart from breastfeeding him, V can and does attend to his every other need. From patting him to sleep, to cleaning up really stinky messes, to feeding him at nights (I keep the milk bottled for then), to burping him after feeds, to playing with him when he is awake, to sitting up with him when he falls ill, V does and enjoys doing it all. I like watching him, in part because it's lovely to see them together, and only a little bit because it means I get a break. WB, in return, shows a sense of comfort and security with him that he does not show with anybody else, except perhaps my mother.

I know men these days are more involved in their children's infancies, yet it still comes as a pleasant surprise to me each day. The men in my family came to the fore once we kids grew up enough to actually interact with, but till then, it was our mothers, aunts, ayahs and grandmothers who ruled our lives. WB though, from the beginning, has shown a strong attachment towards his father. I should have realised, when I was still carrying him and he would kick me all night, and V could still him when I could not, that it could be the sign of an all-male understanding as well as of a spoilt daughter.

The one thing I take strong objection to is V's habit of being entertained by our son. It's all very well to mimic his faces and cry back at him when he revs up, but needs must he discover that the WB shows a distinct resemblance to Master Yoda? (No, that is not complimentary!) I have forgotten all the other things he said WB looked like, but they were all highly objectionable, I recall.

That apart, as a father he impresses more than most.


Opaline said...

You'll be like my mother when you're older, I think. =)

Sue said...

Opaline - Er, you mean traumatised?

Shuki said...

See, I told you you should call him Jaja Binx! Though Yoda isn't half bad either...;-)

Sue said...

Shuki - He also looks like a monkey occasionally. One thing he never looks like is a baby girl. I never knew any baby could look so emphatically male.