We recently went to a class about taking care of newborns. While getting ready to head there I thought I should put on a nicer shirt, so I’d look more like someone who’s ready to be a dad. Like dressing slightly better is the only piece of the puzzle I’m missing right now. I’ve had the same thoughts at the meetings with the OB/GYN. I’m sitting there in a hoodie and a tshirt and sneakers and I feel like she’s looking at me thinking “why does this manchild think he can be a father?” I should stress that this is all on me. The teacher of the class and Amy’s doctor are both wonderful people. My impostor syndrome has never been stronger. But I am kind of an impostor! I’m not really a dad yet. I keep waiting for someone to come along and say “whoa buddy, you didn’t clear this whole thing with the right people.” And when they don’t, I think really? You’re all just going to let us go ahead and make a person? Wow.
People keep asking if we’re getting everything ready. Nope. I moved one bookcase out of the nook that will be the baby’s space. We have a registry and a shower in a bit so we’ll get stuff then, but the baby is about eight weeks out. The waiting is already getting a bit excruciating, and I don’t think sitting in our living room staring at a crib and a shelf full of diapers and bottles will necessarily ease that. I do for real want to make sure I’m in tip-top physical shape on the day, because I have no idea when I’ll be able to exercise afterwards and my sleep schedule and diet will mostly be “get what you can when you can,” so.
Someone asked me about working on a project that would probably take some of my time in the weeks after his birth, and I told them I’m game but I have no idea what my availability will be. My son’s birth is a singularity in the Kurzweilian sense. Something’s going to happen. I know that much. I can make guesses about what follows, but until I’m in it I can’t tell you anything about it. The time I’ve spent learning about Buddhism has helped me let go into the interstitial limbo.
In all honesty I’m really excited and nervous and I know it’s going to be intense and weird and wonderful and the class taught me that I’ve got more of a paternal instinct than I thought. I think we’re going to be OK.
Colin Fisher is many things to many people, but mostly he’s an actor and writer.