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Blog: The birth of a princess

in English 8.5.2016 10:55 | Päivämies-verkkolehti
One Wednesday morning in July we leave our sons with the godmother of the older boy and head toward the maternity clinic. Ultrasound gives proof of it, we will have a baby! I have the same feeling as for the previous pregnancies: incredulous and bewildered, but grateful. I pick up the boys from the godmother, who gives me a big hug of congratulations. We go into the park to enjoy the sunny summer day, and the idea of a delivery in January seems distant and hardly even real. So there will be a baby!
It is always difficult for a man to tell his mates there is a baby on the way. If I seem to be putting on weight, it only means I have not exercised enough. If I keep asking about the way this or that cheese has been made, people only think I am developing an interest in cooking. It is therefore necessary to take the bull by the horns and speak out at a suitable moment.
And there is general thrill and excitement:

– Oh, how lovely! Are you trying for a girl now that you have two boys?

– Three kids is perfect, you can fit them on the back seat of an ordinary car!  

– It’s a great idea to have the kids so close together. Your wife can stay home and take care of them until the youngest is three, and she can then concentrate on catching up with work without more interruptions!

Someone even asks frankly, “did you plan for it, or was it accident”. I am left dumbfounded.

The weeks of pregnancy pass. Wherever we go, we seem to stand out. A family expecting their third child is not exactly a common sight in a big city. Our neighbors stop and gaze: we are temporarily living in a small studio apartment and do not have a car – and there is a baby on the way!
Things begin to happen on the last day of my Christmas leave. My wife wakes up at 8:30, feeling that this might be the day. At 13:03 the midwife hands us a baby girl.

– Such a lovely princess, she exclaims.

We are overjoyed. She is our first daughter.
A princess! A baby girl! The sun is shining on us and on the whole world. But some bitter spices are thrown into our brimming pot of happiness:

– Well, that will be your family then!

– First two boys and then a girl, fantastic family planning!

– If you stop now, you will feel good about it for the rest of your life!

– Take care of your wife and don’t let her overwork herself!
And so life continues. The father of three children sometimes gets mixed up in his words and calls himself the child of three fathers. The princess is given a royal name and, if not half of the kingdom, at least a Barbie house to match. It is a house that has been waiting in the basement of an elderly lady for 30 years to be played with. Our older son likes to call his sister princess and continues to do so even after he could use her proper name.
The princess herself is unbelievably easy. She sleeps for five hours without waking up her parents in the night. She looks at us with her ravishingly beautiful eyes. We all are like putty in her hands. I remember the comments I heard after her birth. I would like to say to those people:

– We were not able to plan anything like this, but it would have been such a pity not to have it happen. It is good we do not need to decide about such things in our life, but can be part of God’s big plan.

Arttu Hartikainen
Translation: S-L.L.
The blog post was published in online Päivämies on 23 Apr. 2014


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