What did Sonny Jim get his dada for Father’s Day? Norovirus. That’s what.
After having spent two nights puking, the little pickle (now thankfully on the mend) thought it only fair to share with his daddy – and me!
So, it hasn’t quite been the Father’s Day I wanted for Gary, though it’s probably not one he’ll forget and am sure he will remind Sonny Jim of when he’s bigger.
But anyway. Here’s what I wrote before projectile vomit hit my little family. And it’s even more true now. There’s nothing that will make you feel more like a daddy than cleaning sick off the cot. And the sofa. And the floor. While your puke-covered missus gives your child his third bath of the night. It’s not glam. It’s not fun. But it is love.
In some ways, Sonny’s Jim’s birth was worse for his dad than it was for me.
Yes, it hurt. Yes, gas and air felt like my only friend. Yes, I was left literally bruised and battered afterwards.
But Gary had to watch. Helplessly. Only able to offer words of encouragement. A hand to squeeze. Promises that he wasn’t even sure he believed anymore, that I could do it, that the baby would be here soon…
And when Sonny Jim finally arrived 16 hours after my waters went and I suddenly forgot just how hard it had been, Gary didn’t.
And though he was sleep-deprived, and emotionally wrung out, he then had to take charge of all logistics. Of sorting the piles of check-out paperwork. Of driving us home. Of making me and our oh-so precious newborn feel secure and safe.
Sunday will be Gary’s second Father’s Day as a daddy – the first was when we were still in that whirlwind of new parenthood, so it passed in something of a blur.
But this year it feels proper.
Sonny Jim has no concept of gratitude yet. He exists in a happy little bubble of babyhood, where mummy and daddy are there for everything he needs.
But I know. So ahead of Sunday, here are some things I should say more often…
Thank you for getting up each morning and making our little man his breakfast. Hearing the two of laugh downstairs over your bran flakes as I get dressed never fails to start my day with a smile.
Thank you for working so hard, day in day out, to keep the roof over our heads, the food on the table, and shoes on Sonny Jim’s ever-growing feet – even though it means you miss out on millions of little moments I get to share with our boy.
Thank you for backing me as a mummy, 100 per cent. For allowing me to trust my instincts and to immerse myself in motherhood so deeply that you must sometimes wonder where your wife has gone.
Thank you for becoming the daddy I always knew you could be.
Happy Father’s Day, darling.