A year ago Alycia and I woke up early in the morning and got ready to go to the hospital. We had a C-section scheduled for Clara’s delivery and knew that April 21, 2016 would be our daughter’s birthday.
In some ways I can’t believe a year has gone by. Everyone says that it goes by so quickly. I still remember going to the hospital and praying outside of the operating room as Alycia was getting prepped for surgery. I remember those first cries from Clara’s lungs. Everything about that day is still so clear in my mind, not least of which being Jake Arietta’s no-hitter against Cincinnati that night.
In other ways, though, the past year has gone by very slowly. Mostly because Alycia and I had some trying seasons. We obviously lost a lot of sleep in those first few weeks. Things got turned upside down when Alycia started working. And even though February is the shortest month of the year, it felt like the longest month of my life because Clara stopped sleeping through the night.
Everyone also told us that our lives would change. I would nod my head in agreement, smiling while thinking, “Of course our lives are going to change.” However, our lives changed in some ways that I wasn’t expecting.
I didn’t expect that I would love just hearing Clara as much as I do. I love hearing her breathe at night in her crib and I love hearing her laugh. I love when she’s in the car singing along with Moana or copying me when I cough. I love hearing her little voice and noises; I can’t wait for her to start talking.
I also didn’t expect to still want to do all of things that I wanted to do before. I sort of thought that when I had a child I wouldn’t want to play video games, read comics and go to the movies. Some part of my brain thought that the fatherhood switch would get turned on and I would grow up. Turns out I still want to play video games, read comics and go to the movies. Because of Clara I don’t get to do those as often as I would like, but I still want to do them all.
I love being a dad. I love seeing Alycia as a mom; that role makes her even more beautiful. This year has been amazing, but I have no idea what’s in store for Clara’s future. I simply trust that she’s in God’s hands and that he loves her more than I ever could.