So yesterday I found out that come August I will be the proud father of a baby girl. Now, never having been a father, before you are told whether you are having a boy or girl there seems to be (at least in my case) a slight disconnect. You know the baby is there, refer to it as “the baby” or “it” but without a large bump, a name or even an identity it never really hits home.
So now we know we have a girl coming I am trying to figure out the type of father I will be. I never really thought about the responsibility of fatherhood until first seeing Father of the Bride. Even before I was married and even considering children I remember feeling pretty touched by this film. Aside from the fact I love Steve Martin, the principle of a “daddy’s girl”, wedding, some other guy sweeping your little girl off her feet etc etc really kind of struck a chord with me. So in many ways I can see myself as the Steve Martin character.
Now on the other hand, I regularly joke (half-heartedly) about the shotgun and rocking chair I will be needing. This is where I feel I am more like Arnold Schwarzenegger in Commando. I seem to be developing a protective nature and my little girl is not even here yet. It seems after many discussions with friends who have recently had children this is not unusual, but seems to be particularly strong with girls. And I think the guns Arnold used may be a little more effective then a shotgun.
I guess we cannot predict our parenting style, our attitudes or how we even begin to raise our children. My wife and I both had wonderful upbringings and continue to have wonderful relationships with our parents so I am grateful that we have a head start in that department. But just in the last day since we found out, I have already started laying down ground rules – she will NOT be allowed to move to NYC at 16 and model, she WILL know that James Brown is the Godfather of Soul, she WILL watch and prefer the original un-re-edited Star Wars and so on and so forth. Now I know this is just a gut reaction and she will listen to music I hate, date boys I don’t trust and do things I just cannot understand but I guess I need to go through this process. I suppose over the next few months I will go through all the other options and Do’s & Don’ts and once that little girl comes into this world I’ll end up throwing out everything and just spoiling her rotten.
I guess in this game of good parent/bad parent I know which role I’ll be playing.
Congratulation to my wonderful wife. I love you.