I have been wanting to write this since long. Want to share whatever I have understood about having a baby in a couple's life. These are delicate times for the couple and if not taken care of in time, they can miss out on the joy of awesome and stunning and wonderful child growth process!
A baby is a bundle of joy, happiness, love, etc is true. But it also brings with it a lot of issues.
Many of the issues arise because of inequality. Pregnancy, child birth, feeding is so much about only the wife... The husband cannot do any of these even if he wanted to. Even if the husband promptly wakes up at night for every cry of the baby, it is the wife who has to do the needful. Biologically itself, the situation is extremely unequal, already. That is, it is quite natural for the wife to get a feeling of suffering more than the husband.
It is of utmost importance that the husband does everything possible to reduce this feeling in the wife. Cooking, cleaning, making baby food, washing, bathing the baby, waking up every time the wife has to wake up, trying to give as much time as possible, just being around the wife, acknowledging the inequality with words, etc could be a possible list of things to choose from.
The wife too, has to accept that the inequality is biological, and hence can never be fully removed, hence she cannot compare the husband's commitment with hers. He cannot be rated on the same scale as hers. Take it easy.
Having a baby could be about a complete change of mode. From husband-wife to father-mother. Mentally. It should ideally happen automatically. This change could manifest in the daily routine, daily duties and tasks, when you wake up, what you do before going to work, how much time you spend on yourself, how long you sleep, how many movies you watch, how many parties you attend, etc. All of these suddenly become baby-centric. If you are still following the same routine as before, something might be wrong!
Please note that I am not talking about people who think that the child is its mother and both grandmothers' responsibility. Neither am I talking about tribals. I'm talking about city dweller working couples living on their own, separated from their ancestors. Where the husband and wife both want to resume working as soon as possible. Where the husband and wife both believe in a liberal value system. Where the husband and wife both share responsibilities at home. Where the husband and wife both are still in love, with each other.
H & W, if both of you fit the criteria mentioned in the above paragraph:
H, if you haven't been fully into father mode yet, for whatever reasons, please start now. It's never too late. W, if you're a still a fighter, for whatever reasons, please stop now. Now is not the time! :')
On the twenty third of October
I realized I cannot be so proud
To be so particular
As I forgot, while on a trip,
At A's hostel, a pair of pants, a T-shirt, a towel and a slip.
A assured I quick
Though I had assumed to let go
That A would bring them back next week.
So did A.
And handed over to B.
And that's when a crucial piece of information
Was passed on by I.
Meet me soon, said I, to B
The clothes shouldn't remain packed
B passed the information on to C,
And C said, let me see.
Days passed by
All were always ready to try
I thought I should remain updated
About the whereabouts
So I enquired
And B said that the goods have reached D.
I kept reminding D
To meet I on the way
But it was not to be
Day after day.
Then once I called up
And D informed that
Only the pants are with D
And I hung up.
Then came a travel date
The only date
When I didn't want the handover fate
But fate is fate.
I got a call, from E
Who was trying hard to ship the goods
Of all days, not today, said I, please.
E said, alright, with ease.
Thus the goods found a new home
In the dicky of E's vehicle
So that further they could roam.
Days passed by.
Demonetization of the Indian economy happened.
Waiting in long queues to exchange currency happened.
F and G borrowing and leaving E's vehicle at G's place happened.
“And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it” happened.
Murphy's law happened.
On the thirtieth of November,
I, E and E's vehicle got together.
The handover took place.
People change over time.
Times change over time.
So do goods, thought I.
The plain grey T-shirt and plain white slip
Had transformed into a colourful piece of undergarment*.
And the pair of pants had transformed into some other* similar arrangement.
Handover proved quite an enlightenment.
Obviously, thought I.
An unknown X happened to know the transformation.
X asked, aren't all of you the people who run an NGO for last 9 years?
Yes, said I.
We, The Transformers.
A, B , C, D, E, F, G, H and I.
[We, The Transformers, in complete solemnity, stand by the one or many, who may or may not have noticed, the disappearance of their *goods.]