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My grandmother always said, “ It takes a whole village to bring up a child.” I couldn’t agree with her more. The to – do list never comes to an end ! Gone are the days when there would be an army of people around to look after the child. Times have changed, and so have the family dynamics. Joint families are a rare find; all you see now, are working couples, struggling to make ends meet miles away from home.Once they become parents, the father becomes the bread earner, while the mother becomes the one man army who takes the responsibility of bringing up the child, along with doing the household chores. Parenthood comes with a whole lot of responsibilities, both for the mother and the father, and to make it a smooth sail, the key is that both work hand in hand.My little one is going to be 2 soon and these two years have been rather adventurous. From soiled bedsheets, poop disasters to temper tantrums; I have been through them all. Taking care of a baby, all by yourself, can be mentally as well as emotionally draining. After all, his father remains busy in his 9 to 9 office hours. However, we were very particular about the time that he spent with his father. Studies have shown that a child who gets the love from both his parents develops better cognitive skills, is emotionally stronger and shows better growth. There were times when the father showing affection to his children was a taboo; no more now. Enough research has been done to prove the importance of the role of the father in a child’s growth.
A survey conducted by Nielsen in association with Pampers validated the father’s role in child care. However, in most of the cases, it was found that the mother was the only one raising the child. The reasons varied from lack of father’s time, unwillingness to do something that was considered only the mother’s job or lack of knowledge about child care. Therefore, we decided to share responsibilities to ensure that the father son bond becomes stronger with some quality time spent together and I get some time at hand for other odd jobs and most importantly, myself.
My son was exclusively breastfed and continues to feed, which means erratic night schedules for me. The best time when I could sleep was from 8 to 10 in the morning. Till we did not manage to get a cook, my husband prepared breakfast for both of us and left for office. Hence I got enough time to catch up on my sleep. After he came back home from office, he would take the baby out for a stroll, giving me enough time to cook a meal for us. Little A would also be so happy to be with papa that he would refuse to let me do anything for him after his father returned, whether it was having his meal or changing diapers.
On our outings, while I dressed the baby and myself, papa dear would pack the baby’s diaper bag. A list of all the essential items that need to be packed was mailed to him, which would be referred to every time, to ensure that nothing was left out. While people had warned me that I would not be able to eat out for the next few years, we did take the risk ( that was the word used at all times ). We took turns to eat when the baby got restless and came back home victorious at all times.
During one such outing, while it was my turn to have food, the little one was out with his father to get some fresh air. They took quite long to come back and when they finally did, little A was in a new set of clothes. It had so happened, that he had pooped in his diaper, and daddy dearest took this opportunity to prove his diapering skills to the fiercely perfectionist mom. He had managed to take off the soiled diaper, wipe the baby clean and put on new diapers all by himself at the rear seat of the car! Thankfully that was the day when I had put on the new sample diaper of the Pampers premium care diapers that I had received and was carrying another one too. They are designed to be taken off with utmost ease and also putting them on, is even easier. Papa dearest loved the soft feel of the diapers and declared that since they had brought him all the glory, they would be the ones bought thereafter. The proud father narrated how he had shed all his inhibitions and taken charge of the situation and managed to finish the task despite his apprehensions. That very day , he was awarded the title of the best father, best husband and also the task of putting on and changing diapers was handed over to him from then on. That is now the daily ‘me ‘ time for me while the little one listens to some bed time stories from his doting father. Papa also makes sure to take time out sometime during the day to read a few stories that he could tell.
There have been times when he made mistakes and I made blunders, but together we managed to do a good job. That I see when I see the two handsome men play , laugh and have a ball together. I smile with joy when he hugs his father to say ,” I love you dad. “. The picture of a happy family that I had always imagined looks complete, and that because we understood that It takes two to raise a happy child.