Sunday, May 5, 2013

Celebrate Fatherhood: Learn to Appreciate Yourself | Guestpost by Daddy Isaiah of JBabies' Dad

Sakura Haruka is not a blog just about celebrating motherhood. It shares the joys {& frustrations!} of parenting and of families as a whole. Inspired by my hubby's thoughts on being a dad, Celebrate Fatherhood is thus a monthly series where daddies from all walks of life share insights about what fatherhood means to them, and how we can appreciate their role in a family too.

I sincerely thank all those who took the time to guest post for me. Most of those I approached were very supportive and enthusiastic about this new series, sharing my belief that being an involved dad, and getting the dads involved, is important in building a strong family. If you have a story to share, please email me at sakuraharuka {at} live {dot} com.

When Ai asked me to write a guest post on her series of Celebrate Fatherhood, I was a bit apprehensive. I mean there are already so many fathers who have contributed to the series, what else can I possibly add on that might be different? As I sat down to pen this post, it gave me the chance to reflect on my short tenure of being a father (7 years).

Let me break it down by time line:
Year 0 – Getting ready to receive our first born into the family, nothing can be prepared beforehand of what is to come. I have decided to be a hands-on daddy, be it feeding, bathing, changing diapers, making milk, etc. Fatherhood is anticipation.

Year 1 – Baby is more interactive now, more attention seeking. But the joy of seeing my darling Joey always outweighs the tiredness from work. Fatherhood is enjoyment.

Year 2 – Experiencing the so call ‘terrible two’ symptom. It seems like fatherhood is no longer easy or fun. It is during this period I questioned my decision of having kids. Without Joey, I could have enjoyed life with the missus. I missed my ‘freedom’ nights. Fatherhood is tough.

Year 3 – Time to think and plan for another child. Seriously, I have never thought of a boy, I mean girls are so cute and I am quite enjoying Joey’s ‘daddy’s girl’ attention. Fatherhood is heavy responsibility.

Year 4 – Birth of a second girl (yea!). Reliving the entire experience of sleepless nights and 2-hr shift work. However, the sight of seeing Joey carrying baby Jayne really ensured me that all is worth it. At the same time, I have to grapple with the cruelty of seeing how Joey cries non-stop when she starts to attend Nursery. Fatherhood is heart wrenching.

Year 5 – This is probably the easiest year of all. Joey is enjoying school and Jayne is super duper cute. Fatherhood is heaven.

Year 6 – Another round of ‘terrible two’. No amount of experience or preparation is enough cos every child is so different even though the factory is the same. Fatherhood is unexplainable.

Year 7 – Joey attends Primary 1 in my alumni school. This is exactly how I have imagined on the day she was born, my child studying in the same school as me. Amazing! Jayne starts Nursery and I have grown emotionally stronger, to stay calm when I see her cry in the morning but laughingly tells me her day when I pick her up after work. Fatherhood is growing up.

Are fathers appreciated? Who and how should we appreciate fathers?
I believe family (wife and kids) should show love and support as fathers do go have to make tough decisions and usually we do not have much support from other fathers around (unlike mothers). But personally I stand on the belief that a father should learn to appreciate himself. If we do not know how important our role is, or if we do not have a healthy self-image as a father, we will not be able to live strong and do well.

Daddy is a choice! The moment I have decided to be a father that decision stays forever!

Isaiah Kuan is married to the most wonderful woman in his life, Klessis, and father to 2 beautiful girls, Joey and Jayne aka JBabies, from which his blog is named after. He is an accountant by training, but a pastoral worker in life. Besides his family and God, he is also passionate about Liverpool Football Club and photography.

I hope that the boy recognises his value and appreciates his importance, even if sometimes we fail to do so sometimes. I may not say it often enough, but he is a great son, brother, father, and husband. He has definitely made me a better person, just by being who he is, and I hope he knows that.

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SengkangBabies said...

Fatherhood is full of surprises :)
Maybe Tiring, but never Dull.

cheers, Andy (SengkangBabies)

Ai Sakura said...

So true Andy!

Unknown said...

Wow. Great feature here! Thanks for featuring and linking out to jbabiesdad blog. I am adding it to my reading list!