I’ve been randomly looking back at old baby pictures. It’s already been 4 months since little man entered the world.
And I get sad. The first picture of him at home from the hospital was with not his dad nor with me. Actually, I wasn’t in any photos with him when I first got home. He was hogged by others. I take pictures of many people with their new babies all the time. I am proud of the pictures I create and send for these new families to remember this fragment of time. So, at first I thought – "sucks always being the photographer".
…then I realized, it was my crazy Asian family.
When we went to the hospital, we asked that they not tell anyone, who may call looking for us, that we were there. We wanted the delivery of our first son to be something special between us. And it was. There were ups, there were downs, but it’s something that can’t be taken away from us.
Our friends who recently had their first babies before us, told us about how their family came and helped them with chores, etc. so that they could spend that time with their little one. As fast as these babies grow, I thought it was the sweetest thing anyone could do. My girlfriend spoke of how her mom stayed and cleaned, cooked meals, and took care of the day-to-day stuff while they learned how to care for the newborn.
That’s a nice thought. But I guess that does not apply to first generation American-born Asians like us though, because my husband was expected to run around town picking up food and grocery items while the family hogged our first baby citing that they won’t get to see him much as the reason. Nope, first-born American-Asian kids still have to respectfully take care of their parents’ needs. These new grandparents need coddle time and need the new dad to take care of everyone. I was lectured for holding Kyler, but it was OK for them to hold him.
Three week old baby boy, Kyler
I didn’t get to hold my baby much while the family was in town. And to date, it still makes me sad that his earliest days were captured with everyone else. It got to the point that when my mom decided to come back a week later, that I bawled, freaked out, and ask that she give us more notice and that she respect our desire to want to be with him alone. I think it sucks for them, too, that we’re so damned independent.
Thankfully, when everyone was gone, my wonderful husband, Donny, was able to take a few great photos of me and our first son when he was shy of a week old.
To that, I advise all new American-Asian parents to hold ground and hold your babies tight. The old school Asian parent customs will get in the way, but don’t let it. The time really does fly and the next thing you know, he’s four months old, bigger, and looks totally different. Enjoy that time when you go from DINKs, dual income no kids, to a family unit of three. I wish I was more adamant about spoiling MY newborn.