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Wednesday, 22 April 2009

A great adventure

Hello everyone, how are you? My name’s Callum and I’ve been working for BBC English and BBC Learning English for over 10 years, but this my first blog.

Life is full of adventures and I want to tell you about my latest adventure. The greatest adventure I’ve ever embarked on. The adventure of parenthood.

Just over 5 weeks ago I had my first child. Well, I didn’t have him, my wife did – but you know what I mean.

11 minutes


At 3.40 on a Thursday morning James arrived into this world peacefully and quietly. I was expecting there to be lots of screaming and crying, but he was very calm.

The emotions of those moments after his birth were overwhelming. Physical and mental exhaustion, elation, relief and a tidal wave of unconditional love. He was so tiny and cute and helpless and he was ours, we had made him.

You realise at that moment life has changed forever; nothing will ever be the same. All your priorities have shifted because now this little baby is the most important thing in the world and everything you do from that point forward is for him.

Being weighed


As we’re discovering it’s not easy being the parent of a newborn. There are so many things you have to learn really quickly, like how to hold him, how to feed him, how to change him, how to clean baby poo from the carpet, how to get him to sleep and most importantly – how to stop him from screaming and crying!

With dad


There is so much advice out there and so much help available that it’s actually confusing. A lot of the advice is contradictory. So we’re trying to find our own way mostly and find our own routine. It’s still very early days but we think we are getting there. However, if you have any really good tips on how to get a baby to sleep I’d be interested to hear them!

Thinking


Now he’s five weeks' old and getting bigger every day. He loves his food. He’s beginning to react more to his surroundings – following things with his eyes, for example. He seems to learn new things every day, as do I.

The next days, months and years will be a real adventure. I’m sure it’ll be a roller-coaster ride. I’m looking forward to his first real smile (he does smile now, but it’s more than likely just wind at his age!) his first words, his first steps etc etc.

But I have to be patient, these things will come soon enough, until then there’s a lot of feeding, cleaning, changing and cuddling to do!



Some vocabulary from this blog:

embarked on
started

overwhelming
so strong that they couldn't be controlled

elation
great happiness

a tidal wave of unconditional love
a very powerful feeling of natural love

your priorities have shifted
the things you thought were important are not the same

contradictory
saying the opposite

a roller-coaster ride
an experience with many emotional high and low points

Comments

Hello Callum! Hello James! Congratulation to your wife, your family! You are an excellent teacher and yet an excellent parent too. Could anybody get douts about that after these most poetical words and shots? The woice you´ve got, feelings in the heart and your hands do the right things you ask for. I can´t say more but I observed how was behaving my two sisters in those days, one was searching and reading literature another just acted as Mother from the nature. In half an hour I am going to MRI examination, your blog acted as the best tranquilizer to make me a bit calm. Thanks to you, thanks to the great work!

Hi Callum, congratulations. Pandora's box is just opened. You are right, some advertisments are contradictory, because there is no literature about how deal new borned (and the worse is it won't be). It's a process of learning without guide. Speaking about to get sleep you can try with 'Estivill methode'. Here in Spain he is a well reputated Dr. in this issues. Take care (certainly you need it). Toni

Hello Callcum, big clap for your great adventure.Although I am still single now, I don't have any experiences to share with you but I would like to share your happiness, your experiences in parenthood! It's so great that everybody wish to have it. Do your adventure with your best! Hau

Congratulations Callum! James is very cute. God bless him :-). All the best, Ana Paula.

congratulation on becoming a father Callum:)A baby is incredibly beautiful!I´ve recently started to learn english, and I have to say that I ´m begining every day with you by listening to your voice on 6 min.english or something similar. many greetings for sweety baby:)

Hello Callum, Congratulations on the birth of your baby to you and your wife! It is a miracle to get such a great little treasure, isn't it? It was beautiful to read such warm-hearted and open-hearted words (from a man!)- thank you for that. As to the sleep-issue, I'm sure he sleeps enough, just at the wrong time :-) Tabea

I'd like to congrat you both on this wonderful event. The baby is really cute.

Hello Callum! Congratulations! i could understand and agree with what you have said,because i am a mother of a 22-month-old son. i am sure your son will give you surprise every day. you will find life is so amazing. i do enjoy the process of growing with my son. i think you will do.

Hi Callum, Congratulations to you and your wife. The pictures are lovely and I particularly like his smile in the pictures as at this age it is not easy to grasp the smile of the baby in the photograph. Isn't it amazing to watch your baby grow. They learn something new every day and you are there to watch him and guide him. At the same time, parents also learn a lot from bringing up children. I am sure it will be a great adventure for you and your wife. I wish you best of luck. Take care Rabail UK

Congratulations,Callcum!Children are angels,they bring happiness to families.i had through such adventure,my sister-in-law borned a baby on 1st.jan.2008,i think it's a lucky day:D now my nephew is one year old ,i am glad that i didn't miss his first smile ,first words,first step and first birthday...it's a happy thing to see his growing,you must agree with me!wish you all the best!

Congratulations Callum! your boy is just amazing!! He is so adorable indeed. Hope we can hear more stories about how your parenting advanture goes as James grows. Goodluck to you and wish you& your family all the happiness. :)

Congratulations,Callcum! I am really enjoying your greatest adventure, and he is so adorable and lovely. He really takes after his father. I am expecting your baby to grow up soon, and to say " HELLO!DADDY!!" :-)

Hello Callum! Congratulations to you and your family! I have been known your voice for a longer time; now I see a happy and tender young father! Let tell you, there is nothing to be worried about. Your feeelings will show you what to do. I was deeply moved what and how you have written about your feelings. All the best for you and your family. Warm greetings. Felicitas

Hello, Callum! I'm really for you! Wish you to be a good father and be proud of your son. You asked for tips on how to get a baby to sleep. You can try to take him out to the fresh air after feeding.

Hello Callum, I`ve been hearing from you lots of very good stuff since last year. But this is the best. Verily the most important job a man must do, I believe, is being a good father. Don`t worry because you`re not sleeping enough, that won`t never be the same. Enjoy the ride !

Hello Callum! Very, very congratulations!! I am not a father so I cannot offer any advice. I think no textbook or guide can tell us how it is like to be or become a good father. I think it is something we learn and experience day by day. Again, very congratulations and thanks for sharing this event with us. All the best, Filippo

Hello Callum, First of all, I would like to congratulate you and wish you a very happy family. I have heard your voice many times but never seen you. Today I saw your picture together with your baby. Where is baby's mother ? It's an unfair for us. Regards,

Hi Callum! Welcome both of you and your wife to uncharted territory of parenting hood! Indeed, James is a certainly charming and adorable baby like the most exciting and the proudest his daddy in the world. Your buzzing story of being a father takes me a trip down memory lane of mine. My son, who is 7, was 6 weeks premature baby. He was like a reddish rabbit with skinny fingers and toes when he was popped out and said hello to his daddy and mummy. As soon as I saw the little at the first time I instantly fell in love with him. But something bad thing was about to happen. I was the edge of collapse and looked like being at the death’s door because I had lost 5 pints of blood after giving the birth. Nobody raised the alarm except my husband. All I could hear was my husband’s terrified shouting for help with tearful eyes. Just before I was taken a theatre I had been thinking I might not be able to see my new born baby again, so I looked at him in despair. My tiny-winy son in his daddy’s arm looked as if he was praying for his mum’s life with clenching his fists and closed eyes.Since then, I’ve learnt something everyday that how wonderful, adventurous and sometimes scared journey to be a parent is, and parental responsibilities from watching my son growing. Time goes by I am sure you'll have lots of great experiences wanting to share with us. Don't hesitate and write us more about your son’s growth and how wonderful or clumsy daddy you have been! Please give my best words to your wife and a huge congratulation to you and her again!

Hi Callum, Congratulations on your new baby. As you said, it's a great adventure. James is so cute and lovely. I'm sure you'll be a wonderful and caring father. Congratulations also to your wife. Enjoy him and seize every moment because it's unique. Best wishes, Cristina

Dear Callum! I am so happy to hear your news. Well, you are a Daddy! Let me say 'Congratulations!' to you and your wife on the arrival of your little bundle of joy. I wish you and your family good health, good luck and safety. As a Mum to two (however grown-up) children I can imagine how you are feeling at the moment. Being a parent is a fantastic thing and a new and a giant responsibility. I know exactly how quickly children grow up…so enjoy every moment with your newborn baby. James is a really cute, adorable baby. Take care,

Dear Callum, congratulations on your baby. I was really touched by your post, not only because I'm also a 'first-time' parent of a 8-month- old baby girl, but also because it is so well written. Love oozes from every word you put down. You ask for some advice on how to put your baby to sleep. Well, I can't give you any this-will-definitely-work recipe because I thnk there's none. But I can tell you what I've learnt during these tiring but beautiful months - let your baby lead you. When my daughter was 5 months I tried to teach her how to fall asleep on her own. Big mistake. Things got worse and my husband started to sleep in the living room because he couldn't bear her crying any more. Namely, the little thing started to wake up crying histerically every hour or so. What did I do? Well, I let her 'decide' how to doze off during the day and at night and that sort of did the trick. Now she falls asleep without my help and doesn't wake up so frequently at night. And, yes, my hubby sleeps next to me again :)) Take care,

Congratulations, Callum. It's great to get a baby. As you say, one gets contradictory advice. And each child is different. I didn't leave my three first children cry when they were babies, I tried to console them. But my fourth child seemed to need to cry in order to fall asleep. He didn't cry for long, five minutes or so and then he slept.

CONGRATULATIONS Callum! You're completely right, the moment you're a parent "life has changed forever". And be sure the memory of this moment will ever be with you...To me it can't be compared to anything in the world. Your nice words have taken me back to 11 years ago when my son was born. Dear Callum, talk to him, let him feel the kind music of your words. Hold him even when he is not crying or seems to need anything. Massage his body, and don't forget to show your love to your wife...All the Best, Hania

hi! Callum and your child. i think that is so great! a wonderful gilf's Gold for human and your family hi hi hi... How do you feel? uhm..... besh wish for you and your child. i like so much. Hopeffuly. i will have a child same you in near furture....i'm wraiting and waiting..., Hai van

Congratulations Callum! Wish you all good for the best and successful parenthood and best wishes for your son. All the best, Naheed

oh My! what a cute he is!I want to cuddle him very much.

Hello Callum! congradulations to your wonderful parents, you are the best gift they ever had. You are a cute and adorable baby! God bless you! Take care and let Mumy sleep at night!!!

Congratulations to you and your wife on the birth of your baby! I think that it´s truth , nowadays we have information about differents subjets anywhere , but sometimes is contradictory . I haven´t children , but I work as psycologist and one of my task is parents training and I know that you have reason when you say that you must find your own routine .Anayway I agree with Toni who write you from Barcelona , Dr. Estivill is an expert on sleep and the book which he wrote "duermete niño" had helped to many parents to show their children how sleep better. Good luck with your new task!

hello Callum!!! Firstly I would like to thank you for dedicating your self 10long years for the sake of BBC, this is your first blog and this is my first commnet on a blog. We can comment on something easily, we can debate but what we can't do is ignoring a baby. its beyond my expression that you now 've a beautiful baby, hope oneday that baby will discover the world by the imagination and will make the father happiest once again.Love, affection and blessing for the baby,,,,,,

Congratulations to you and your family! Your son is so cute and lovely. Your moving words recall me the adventure I used to experience 17 months ago when I gave birth to my daughter. In my eyes, one of my greatest achievements in my life is being a mother. On the other hand, taking care of baby also make parents mature and strong mentally and spiritually because we are parents, the shelther for our vulnerable babies. As per sleep of little babies, it is very common that some of them sleep very well in the day time but awake in the night. Anyway, just let him be active in the daytime step by step. Then he will feel tired and sleepy in the night and have a good sleep. This solution did work for my daughter. Finally, pls send my best regards to your family once again, especially your wife and son. Take Care. Lena from Shanghai, China

Hello Callum! congradulations to your wonderful life. It is very happy to hear you open a new page in your life. The feeling is like the world hold on your hand. Right? What a unprecedented experience! God bless you!

Hello! Congratulations! Your baby is beautiful. I wish you a lot of wonderful moments together, may you have all that you wish for! Indeed it's a real challenge, learning so many things in such a short time... Kids do grow fast! Wish you all the best!

Hi dear Callum, congratulations for your baby. I have a dougther she is 16 years old now, "you wil get there". I agree if you, it is an "amazing feeling" more once, congratulations and ("felicidades")

First of all,congratulations. I must tell you that I agree with every single word that you have written on your post.I'm a father and I know what are your talking about. Just one tip,JINA FORD.She's an excellent english writer.Read her books and you'll know all the answers and all the questions. Good luck and enjoy every second.

Hi Callum, CONGRATULATION!! He's so adorable!! especially his small smile and his eyes on the second picture from top. I love that :) I myself have never raise a baby but I have a tip which might help you. Have you heard about a study on infantile language? Once the inventor, Priscilla came to Thailand so I heard about this. This might help you know what he want when he make a sound or cry. You can search for more detail by the name shown below. Priscilla Dunstan/ Dunstan Baby Language Hope this help :) ps. I think I've to speed up my english study before your child become in advance of me in speaking english. ha ha ha

Congraduations Callum! all my best wishes to your son and your family. I believe that you are a good father of your son.

Welcome to this world, little boy,YOU r so cute,kiss u ^-^. I have to say your father is very devoted to his job, at the end of the blog, there is vocabulary for all of us. I hope you will not worry about your language just as a good teacher accompanying all the time. at last, congratulations to your family, wish you and your wife a happy day.

Lots congratulations!!! To you and your family on the birth of your little angle.God bless him.

Hello Callum! I am João Carlos's doughter (from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) who posted a mensage above. Congratulations! Your baby is cute! cute! Best wishes!

Thanks for your advice. I'm pregnant and in bed, hopefully our twins will be born next October. You have made me feel calm because nobody taught you to look after your baby but nature is witty and I'm sure everyone learns bit by bit. I really enjoyed your report about your newborn-THANKS AGAIN and hope Callum is an angel!

Hi Callum, You definetively inspired me with your description of how you feel and what you are going through. I loved being able to learn about someone so full of joy for becoming a father. It is one of the biggest challenge an happiness inyour life. Congratulations

We just love your story! Thanks for shared it.

what can I add? My daughter is 1 year and 7 months now. And I really realize all the difficulties that happened and will come. I believe you'll get over and your cute baby will bring you much exciting moments and endless happiness!

Newborn babies are the most worderful creatures in the world;)) Thank you for these photos. My son is 3 and now I miss those first days when he just came into this world. Unfortunately, most parents don't remember this period well as they face many problems. That's why the more photos you make and films you shot about you baby the better!

Congratulation Callum Your son is so cute. God bless him. It's a great experience specially for the first child. As for sleeping problem you can simply sing to him.

Congratulations for both of you! Perhaps you will need some advice from your doctor, but you will find the right path, don't worry! Babies need to get used to living in a different environment, so be patient (try to sleep when he sleeps!! ;-) Having a baby is a great experience, the best one! Much love and enjoy it! Inés

Hi Callum, Congratulations for both of you. what a cute baby! Infact,emotions during moments of Baby-birth are beyond description (especially when mother is in operation theatre. Bringing up a child is very much wonderful experience. On 13.11.2007 God blessed me with a Son. In these days, I feel thrilled when he say bye-bye (in a strange tune & action) to me when I leaves Office and welcome me with his own method i.e lot of screaming /smiling on my rejoining home. A period when Child starts to learn a language is really great/wonder- ful/blissful period for parents. I experienced that during the first 5 months crying child wants the touch/cuddling/shelter of his mother only. Thereafter,child likes change of hands but mother remains a cheif handler. The more family hands to care, more smart & happy child will be and no doubt learn various things quickly. Have a nice day.

Hi Callum, Congratulations what a lovely baby. My wife and I have 6 children.The most now grow.I think you are a great father and your wife a great mother.I give you a advice Give him more live and go to a lot of doing with your family.The time is fast running out. god luck the best whises

Hi Callum! L congratulate you. I have 1,5 year old daughter. And it is a wonderful feeling to see how he grows up. When we have a child the life becomes full of different feeling, like love, care, joy, laugh etc. I really wish you health, happyness, siccess just the positive things.

Hi Callum, CONGRATULATION!! your son is smart and cute as you are .. God bless you and your family abundantly.

Hi Callum, Congratulation for you and your wife. That is very happy adventure. Goodluck to your family all the happiness.

Hi Callum, Congratulation you & your wife. That is very happy adventure. Goodluck for your family all the happiness

Congratulation! It's always the most beautiful moment when a new life comes~ :-)

Congratulation!!! Parenthood is the best experience that a man can feel.

Hi Mr. Callum, congratulations ;-) Your son "James" will bring happiness and love to your family, I wish you all the best. Take care of your newborn :)

Thanks for all your contributions. This blog has now closed and can no longer accept new comments.

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