New Coastie – New Coastie under construction

I am going to have a baby this summer. The news did not come as a shock because we planned it. The shock came when I saw the first scan of the tiny wiggly worm growing in my wife’s belly. There was a sudden current of joy. However, the joy could not be shared with the world because societal convention dictated that I wait until a healthy fourteen-week scan. That seven-week wait was a very anxious time because there is a greater chance of miscarriage. It was also an anxious time because I had my mother on my back for the last couple of years about giving her a grandchild. Since our wedding, every time I talked to her, she would interrogate me like the prominent New Zealand journalist, John Campbell, about my “progress”.

Thankfully, the fourteen-week scan got an excellent pass mark. It was time to inform people about the arrival of a new human being in my family. My mother was as joyous as John Campbell whenever the Hurricanes win at Super Rugby. A poor goat in Pakistan got the short end of the stick because my parents sacrificed it as a custom and distributed the meat to people who cannot afford to eat meat. My baby, only fourteen weeks in the belly, was already, indirectly, not a vegetarian. Poor goat. Thank goodness John Campbell does not sacrifice a goat whenever the Hurricanes win.

My mother did go a bit overboard by crediting God for the whole thing. Calm down Mum, my wife and I had something to do with it. We implemented technological and mathematical prowess of the 21st century to pin down the baby making window to a day in a month. Two months into it and et voilà!

With the joy came the dread. I looked at our house and it is a hazard bonanza for a baby. I have got to fix it. The gaps in the stairs and the railing, the chic, sharp cornered furniture, and floor level electrical sockets to name a few hazards. Then I looked at our bank account and the baby is a hazard bonanza for our finances. Do not get me started on the hundreds and thousands of dollars the baby products market is salivating to take from us just by selling me a stroller. I cannot even imagine what my wife is going through. She is doing all the work.

I hear that a parent’s frame of reference for life changes once the baby is born. You are not the centre of the universe anymore. I am looking forward to that. I was getting tired of myself anyway. I will take in the dread and the joy and go with it. I carry my ancestors with me and now I am going to be somebody’s ancestor. The kind of ancestor I will be is completely on me. My life is for my pepi and I will give it my sincere best.