It was a great month. I celebrated my first birthday as a dad, Isay began slowly turning to her side. She was flashing gummy smiles and I was two weeks into doing a bigger share of child-rearing responsibilities. The wife had just maxed out her maternity leave and it was time for me to step up to the plate. There were a lot of nervous moments (try giving your baby a bath for the first time!), but things slowly smoothened out as the days passed.
If ever there was a month where mornings with Isay took off on a deeper, more special meaning, October was it. More sunshine walks together. Basketball chats while I bathed her. Breakfasts where I’d pull her crib to the dining table so we could “talk” while I ate. Isay slowly getting used to me feeding her through the bottle.
IF THE idea of this blog had struck me earlier, I would have definitely recapped each passing month of Isay. But since this got off to a late start, about roughly two months into this magical ride they call fatherhood, It was pretty much too late for months one and two.
But the seed of the monthly update continued to germinate in my mind. I do write monthly letters to Isay in a little red book that I keep private. But since there were a few stuff that I didn’t mind sharing, I couldn’t let go of this monthly update thing. So forgive me for cramming the first quarter of Isay’s first year into a single post.
There was so much to learn and share from Isay’s first three months. And it hardly matters whether you’re a normal joe type of a father like everyone else or you suffer from anxiety disorder like I do. The first few months of fatherhood will be a steep learning curve that you are totally unprepared to go through.
ONE OF the thing that would really make me happy is if Isay gets hooked on sports. It doesn’t have to be competitively, although God knows a sportswriter dad would always dream of that. But at the very least, I hope she gets interested enough to try out a few disciplines—if only for the fact that sports-active people are some of the healthiest, well-balanced people on earth.
The wife and I talk about it a lot, and we include sports talk with our daily conversations with Isay. We’ve talked about sports like football (our consensus top pick), swimming, tennis, volleyball and taekwondo. I come from a lineage that has asthma encoded into our genetic software. Arthritis, meanwhile, seems to be programmed in my wife’s DNA. And the best way for Isay to crash those genetic downloads is to maintain a healthy lifestyle, which includes getting into sports.
So I try to get her exposed to sports in whatever way I can.
WHILE it was safe for Isay to have her first Halloween, we drew the line on her first cemetery visit. The crowd is just too much for a kid her age. In lieu of that, allow us—Isay, her mom and me—to light a few candles in honor of those we will always refuse to forget.