Way, way, WAY back, well before we had children, before we were married or even engaged, I learned something fabulous about my guy.
He was totally at ease with kids.
We met as college students, I a senior and he a junior. A mere three months separated us, age-wise, but our birthdays fell such that I was a full year ahead in school.
We liked hard rock music, playing darts, and sharing champagne late into the night. He had floppy blue-black hair, a backwards ball cap, and a wicked dimpled grin.
He also had pictures of his baby niece and nephew taped to his computer.
The summer after that year found me in Connecticut and him in Indiana. I had graduated and he had a year of college ahead of him. We were “technically” broken up, but the incessant phone calls and whispered “I love you”s continued on. (Our hearts were more committed than our brains, apparently…)
We closed one such phone convo with me promising to call him Thursday morning, before either of us headed in to our jobs waiting tables at restaurants in our respective states.
“That works,” he replied, “but call me at this number,” and he rattled off the digits. “That’s my sister’s number– I’m babysitting my nephew.”
And so I did, chatting away while he competently changed diapers, diced turkey, and provided care for this young toddler. It was so incredibly natural, it astounded me.
When my own siblings started having babies, it was the same.
We’d visit my family, and he’d insist on carrying my sister’s baby son so she could more easily peruse the shops. He’d tuck chubby thighs in baby bjorn carriers without batting a lash. He would play trains, sculpt play-doh, and build with blocks without ever seeming to get bored.
I was dating the Fun Uncle. And, I must say… I encourage other young women to do the same. Because, fun uncles? Frequently turn into Fun Daddies. And it’s awesome to be married to one of those.
Good-looking guys who are great with kids were obviously something that made me melt. Anyone else get weak in the knees at that combo?