I get up at 7 and make coffee. By 7:30 my wife is looking for her keys to jet. By 8 my son is already rolling around in his bed, waiting for me to change his diaper. We gargle syllables for a spel, then I change his outfit. Shortly thereafter, I plop him in his bouncer and play a Baby Einstein video while daddy sips his coffee and seeps into his e-mail accounts. By 9 or 9:30, I switch on the Pandora or NPR and let him crawl around on his stomach. He works up an appetite and I mix some cereal and banana baby food in a plastic saucer and crane it into his mouth. If it's not too hot, we walk to the park three blocks away, and go on the swing for a bit. By the time we get back, he's ready for a nap. After noon, it's pretty much the same drill of changing diapers and feeding until my wife walks through the door and I can be relieved.
Sometimes we go jogging, and I am somewhat taken aback as middle age women give me thumbs-up a as I jog by. I also get a lot of looks of derision from my masculine contemporaries that feel that I've turned soft, somehow, by stepping up and raising my child while my wife works. Those people don't pay my bills, so I am not really interested in what they're trying to sell. Most of the time, though, I am most happy when I know that I am giving my child my undivided attention and care as he grows from infant to toddler.
According to the Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of June 3, 2011, "the unemployment rate was essentially unchanged at 9.1 percent." Therefore, if at least almost one in ten Americans is currently unemployed, then there must be many more men in my situation. I am a Stay-at-Home-Dad via unforeseen consequences, but it has turned into one of the most fulfilling accidents of my career as a Human. After teaching high school in the Bronx for several years, I realized the best thing I could do was bestow the best of my attention, creativity, and patience to my son so that he does not grow up maladjusted, and helpless. I had seen too many kids that were going to end up statistics; instead of a statistic, my kid was going to become a Statistician. I have been there every morning he's woken up, and there are few diaper changes I have not had a direct hand in.
A Spanglish blog dedicated to the works, ruminations, and mongrel pyrotechnics of Yago S. Cura, an Argentine-American poet, translator, publisher & futbol cretin. Yago publishes Hinchas de Poesia, an online literary journal, & is the sole proprietor of Hinchas Press.