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Not always do I write in the "usual" straight line of thought. This Father's Day column is one of those sideways glances. For those of you who, like me, adore Teri Franta, the sideways chica, I promise I'm not infringing!



Since I wrote about my dad on his birthday and I've waxed poetic about my husband many, many times, I thought I'd write about a new member of "The Dad's Club". My son-in-law Alex. He became a first time father on January 25th to our first grandchild, Dylan.



As with most new parents, his face beamed in the world's hugest grin with only the happiness a parent knows.



The moment for him was a jumble of relief, wonder, happiness, exhaustion and nerves.



Our daughter, his wife, had endured a high risk pregnancy and had to be induced for the safety of hers and the baby's health. She was weak to the point of not being allowed out of bed to see her newborn. It was both sad and difficult not to be able to sit in the NIC unit.



The job of caring for her and Dylan was an immediate need and Alex rose bravely to the occasion. Shuttling back and forth from one room to the other, he helped Sarah lovingly do just about everything. Then down to his brand new baby boy to care for him. The new little family was able to miraculously go home the next afternoon-as long as Sarah promised to stay on bed rest. Alex took to being the literal chief, cook and bottle-washer like a pro.



When I came a couple of days later the poor guy looked disheveled. He was glad my sister, niece and I had come. He showered and dressed. While the rest of the company stayed to help my daughter, I took Alex out to buy some lunch and a few needed groceries. I'm pretty sure he was glad to see that the outside world was still intact.



Our daughter said Alex was "amazing Mom, he knew just what to do-how to calm the baby down, feed him, clean him-everything! And no one showed him how! He's wonderful". As if she was seeing her husband for the very first time.



And maybe she had-he somehow seemed more settled and sure of himself. He had developed keen organizational skills and an understanding that wasn't near as adept as it was just a few days before the blessed event.



My hope is that his joy of fatherhood continues and grows. His journey, as not only a father, but man and husband will be completely fulfilling and that someday he will feel the love that his father-in-law now does when Dylan gives him the honor of becoming part of the next venue called "The Grandpa's Club".



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