Last year, I wrote a post about my husband as a father and I mentioned how hard it was for him to bond with Cupcake in the beginning. Honey is not the type of man who loves someone on principle alone. He does not love you because he has to, because he is supposed to, or because you share the same blood. This might explain why the dissolution of his relationship with his big brother has caused him no great grief. He does not feel obligated to maintain a relationship with him just because they have the same parents.
Likewise, it also makes sense why the birth of his daughter did not immediately make his heart swell with love and affection. Honey had to get to know her first. And that takes time. Of course, even though he assured me that he knew his feelings would eventually change, those two months of un-bondedness when Cupcake was a newborn were hard. At least, hard for me. I was hormonal and exhausted and worried that my husband may never love his little girl like I did. Or at all. But all the worry was for naught, because he was right and I was wrong. Thankfully. As Cupcake grew, so did Honey. He became more comfortable in his fatherhood. His face would light up when he saw his daughter. And now, you would never know that, once, he hadn’t even wanted children. Or that there was a time less than three years ago, when his baby girl was no different than any other stranger to him. He is now undeniably in love with Cupcake and with being Cupcake’s father and he is a different man altogether. Softer. Gentler. More responsible. More mature. More selfless. And I am so lucky that his is the father of my children.
But of course, with another baby on the way, I have been thinking of Cupcake’s early months all over again. And wondering if things will be different. Wondering how Honey will adjust. While I don’t know if the bonding will be instantaneous with Skittle, I do think it will happen sooner this time. Honey has even said so himself. Already, he seems more ready and more excited to welcome this second baby than he ever did the first. He talks about Skittle a lot. He touches my belly. When I first told him I was pregnant, he seemed happy instead of terrified. And he now knows what to do as a father. He knows how to change a diaper, how to hold a newborn. He knows that they are blobs in the beginning and get their personalities some time later. He is more prepared for what is to come.
And so am I. Because I know that, no matter how Honey feels in those first few weeks, there will come a day when his second daughter joins Cupcake as the center of his universe. She will melt his heart, become the apple of his eye, bring him glee and laughter every day. I don’t know when that will be, but it will happen sooner rather than later and I cannot wait for it. Because watching my husband parent is one of the greatest joys in my life.