First off I must welcome you to the club. Any new father is welcomed but it is completely up to you on how long you stay. So to help keep you here I put together a list of the best dad skills needed for new fathers. Nothing too serious but very helpful when it comes down to caring for your new clone.
The first thing to always remember when taking your kid out into the world is to always bring extra everything. Extra baby clothes, extra food, extra binky, extra blanket, extra diapers and whatever else the kid needs. But it doesn’t stop there. Also, be sure to bring an extra shirt for yourself. You never know when your new distance spitter will go for the gold. Having all of the extras will help keep you prepared for the worst. Sure it’s a lot to bring but it all can be managed into a diaper bag or backpack. It’s easy enough that will keep you from regretting on going out in the first place.
Next on the list is as equally as important as the first and that is knowing how to change a dirty diaper. This includes a #1 dirty diaper and a #2 dirty diaper and a #6 dirty diaper. What’s a #6 you ask? Well it’s basically 3 #2’s and is on everything, including you (hence my first suggestion). Changing a diaper in general isn’t hard to do. It’s the cleanup and managing another human being that can move independently. Legs will kick and booties will scoot, so be prepared to handle these situations. Impress your significant other by volunteering to change the diaper. It’s good practice and also helps train your nose for my next skill.
Control your gag reflex. Babies are cute and adorable. They have their own smell that I like to equate to “new car smell” but they also produce some of the most vile stentches known to Earth. It’s amazing how something so little can cause so much damage but it happens and it happens frequently. I am not proud but I am willing to admit that my first few diaper changes were met with lots of gags. If you can’t control yourself, keep a bucket near by, or a mask. Something that can help the smell. If a #2 happens in the bathtub (it will) be prepared to deal with that too and always remember to wash your hands. Just use plenty of soap.
As your new child gets a little older and has gotten into a routine of eating and going potty you will start to notice that they may develop a favorite movie or cartoon. As a dad that has lived through the popularity of Disney’s Frozen one of my greatest pieces of advice is to only allow your child to watch movies or cartoons that you yourself are willing to watch repeatedly for the next few days, weeks, months, and possibly years…
I cannot tell you how many times I have seen the movie Frozen. It’s not a bad movie at all but watching Anna and Elsa on screen for the last few years has been damaging to my brain. When I was a youngster I remember hounding my mom and grandma to watch Dumbo all the time. That and Star Wars were my go to movies. I still love those movies but I can imagine my parents are probably tired of hearing about them thirty something years later.
The last skill that I suggest every dad learn is one that I like to call “the other pocket”. Time after time while I am holding the baby (or groceries, or practically anything) it never fails that when I go to unlock the car or door or whatever my keys are always in the other pocket and I am left trying to switch arms and balance everything so I can get my keys out to unlock whatever it is that needs unlocked. It is important as a dad to learn how to maneuver about while in odd situations. Practice before hand holding various items while attempting to retrieve keys from various pockets. It’s not easy but it can be done with a lot of practice. Before you know it you will be balancing three kids on one hip and a bowl of salsa in the other hand all while unlocking your front door. It’s a monumental task but I know you can do it!
So that’s all I got for now. I will keep thinking of some more skills new and old dads may need to be the best fathers they can be to their children. Let that imagination go wild and show those kiddos what it takes to be the best dad in the world.