Three Things I’ve Learned on Paternity Leave

Since becoming a Daddy (see my blog for my first day here) I’ve learned a lot on my Paternity Leave. Now that I will be heading back to work in a short while I thought it worth capturing some of these things to share them.

Confidence Counts

Confidence builds quick!
Confidence builds quick!

I’ve learned that confidence counts for a lot in looking after your baby. N is our first baby and I think it’s fair to say we were not very confident when he was born. We have held babies before now, our nephews and nieces mainly, but none of them for any extended period at such a young age and not fully taken care of them. As such, these experiences did help with our confidence but it’s so different from having your own and having to look after it by yourselves. Although we started with little confidence, it really doesn’t take long to build it quickly because you have to do everything. Nobody else is going to do all the various tasks for you, and through repetitive successful completion of tasks you build confidence. We are more confident than we were yesterday and we will be more confident with each passing day. Therefore I’ve learned that even if you’re not confident at first, you will learn to be very quickly!

There is Nothing as Precious as Time

Time with your family is so important
Time with your family is so important

These two weeks of Paternity Leave have flown by but I really feel like we have taken full advantage of the whole time. I’ve certainly learned where my priorities lie!

Prior to N arriving we loved our sleep and would often enjoy a lie in. Now, as you can guess, we are not having any lie ins. This means we have more of the day to enjoy spending time together as a family which is fantastic.

We’ve been fortunate that Clare’s recovery from surgery has been going well thus far so we have been able to get out. We have been going to see family and friends, eating out and going for a coffee which has been great. We were not expecting to be able to get out much as Clare would be recovering but we have which is great. The time we have had in these weeks has been very special, unique and very precious, I just wish it were longer! It’s going to be tough going back to work!

Be Prepared!

Be prepared!
Be prepared!

I don’t think anything can fully prepare you for becoming a parent, but it’s not that element of ‘being prepared’ that I’m referring to. Get everything around the house as prepared as you can. The more prepared you are prior to the birth the more time you get to spend with your baby and family. Think through everything you can prior to the birth to plan as much as possible and get what you need.

For example, the key tips I’ve learned to get prepared are:

  • buy meals which are easy to make, perhaps pizza or pasta etc (or something else beginning with P, pies maybe…)
  • get in lots of drinks and snacks, as well as some healthy snacks of course!
  • consider which items you want two of for upstairs and downstairs. For example we’ve got a changing table both upstairs and downstairs to make life easier
  • buy in plenty of nappies, cotton wool etc and split it between upstairs and downstairs
  • consider any machines that could make life easier, such as a Tommee Tippee Perfect Prep machine to prepare formula

Take some time to think through what may make your life a bit easier. This could mean better quality time during Paternity Leave. I’ve barely left the side of my wife and N as we planned ahead well which has been fantastic.

Good Luck

They’re the three things that have stood out to me during the last two weeks. I’ll finish this post by saying ‘good luck’ if you’re expecting. Make sure you do whatever you can to maximise time with your little one on your Paternity Leave.

If you’ve had kids what key pieces of advice would you pass on about your paternity leave?


  1. Great tips!!! Anything parents can do to prep and make like easier ahead of time will be a life saver once the little bundle that keeps you from sleep comes along! Another side is all the clothes! And being prepared and organized with the different ages and cycling through it all. That’s been on ongoing battle for me congratulations on your little one!

    1. Thanks Reilly. Clothes are one thing we have to make sure we keep ordered as he is going to start going up from newborn very soon!

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