After you did your wedding vows, the patting shot you fondly remember from your mum, was that she was awaiting several grand kids. In hindsight, you thought you were done with pressure. No. After the lobbying from all and sundry, small talks and persistent, ugly questions of “kama ulipata mtu”, you finally surprised them with a wedding. Ooh dear, what a relief, or so you thought! Marriage life is where the rubber meets the road. You realise there are two parties that must be kept happy, even if it means faking it. Both families. It also dawns on you, the need to balance opinions between your mum and your wife. Speaking of your wife, she’ll have convinced you that you need to chill for two, damn, long years for her to complete her Masters class to even contemplate having a baby. You wish she appreciates how long you’ve waited and craved to be a daddy.
Yes, you’ll feel confused because all you care is a son or a daughter. You badly need one like yesterday. Before you know, this will serve as your maiden disagreement which when push comes to shove, then Koffi Annan (read marriage counselor) will have to find his way in this muddy affair. Lest it’ll prolong for months and sometimes choke your chemistry. Close to a year later, she’ll send you a text message on a hot Wednesday afternoon, saying she got some good news. You are the kind of a chap that doesn’t work with suspense. You even warned her of surprises. She’ll throw a hint, that Doctor Alice gave her some very exciting news. You’ll jump on your feet, forgetting you are in this quiet environment (where everybody tends or pretends to be busy). Your colleagues’ necks will wag at you, acclimatising with this unfamiliar face. It’ll be tough to fight back tears of joy! At this point, you’ll not give a damn. It’s been a long time coming. Only God and you can attest to this.
Fast forward several months. Dealing with a pregnant wife, was something you had not waded in. You didn’t portend to be the one holding the short end of the stick. Somebody should have prepared you for this. Isn’t there an Association of Husbands With Pregnant Wives where they perhaps exchange notes and give each other moral support? Or a place where you sit round, like a dozen group of men with a moderator or whatever they are called, and make fun of these weird experiences you’ve gone through as you laugh loudly? This can be very crucial in airing out your bottled-neck anxiety or stress related issues, triggered by your pregnant wife. It works for women, right?
She is 6 months now. As the bulging body makes its presence felt, so do your responsibilities soar. Actually within the first month, she had made enough complains about ironing your clothes. You chose to take on ironing, something you’ve not done for over a year. Then she developed this desire of hovering around your body. She liked you even more and even started calling at 5:30 pm to inquire if you were making your way home. This caught you by surprise but worked anyway as you felt ‘very much needed’. The first trimester was hell on earth as her body was getting acquainted to the changes in her body. Mood swings checked in and swapped at will, even at 12am when she used to wake you up, trading complains of you squeezing her against the wall. Then came in, regular nausea and heightened smell. She would ‘smell’ you a kilometer a way. Your deodorant which you still used even before the two of you first met, became an issue in this period.(1st trimester).
You learnt to adjust very quickly and became open minded going by all these hullabaloos. Her 2nd trimester is almost done, but it has come with its fair share of problems. What scared you most, was her waking you up (she still does) at 3am to warm some food. Hahaha, she feels hungry at 3am, how now? Nature has humour. So, for 3 months now, you’ve been waking up to sit at the couch as she makes her way to the kitchen to warm some food. She’ll then walk to the table room, and insist on sitting on your legs with all her weight. Gai! This clearly hasn’t worked especially going by how she sits down(she falls on the couch like a thunder. I’m sorry…..she’ll strangle you for writing this, hehe). So, as she eats, sitting between your legs, you get lost in the future. Toying with the idea of what type of daddy you’ll be and what your kid will turn out to be. You gaze at the walls, at these quiet times of dead of a night before your eyes stumble at the moving clock’s minute hand. This suddenly reminds you how fast you need to get back to bed to hide from your office in-tray and before the earthlings come to life in a few hours.
By this time too, she has also relinquished most of the cooking to you or the day scholar-house girl depending on her moods. Before she stopped, she used to wash her hands a million times. She became too sensitive to ‘hygiene’ hence the million washings. Her craving for meat has become a daily ritual. She even woke you up at one point demanding some hot soup. You had to wake up early, to book some bones from Mr.Githendu your butcher. There is also this time she cried for a sugarcane. You personally hasn’t eaten a sugarcane for decades. Your teeth are not so strong to rough up a cane. How then did she expect one to be found in the house? This was a long fight.
What has kept you moving is the love you have for this unborn baby and of course your wife. You get goosebumps for being a daddy in waiting. The mild imagination of slamming the door in the morning after kissing this sweet munchkin and walking home to realise how you love him/her, is invaluable. The mere thought of your family and in laws holding her(him) in their arms with sincere joy gives you enough impetus to surpass these pregnancy effects and experiences. It’s worthy it man! Enjoy as it lasts and do it with all your heart and while at it, have fun and show some love. It’s only nine months.