The one about Avery
It is currently 1:52 am. I just put my daughter to sleep. Instead of catching up on my own sleep, I felt a calling to turn on my laptop and start writing this article.
Recently, we welcomed our daughter, Avery Trinh Ngo, into the world. While Avery was resting in my arms, I couldn’t help but think about my dad.
My dad was in his early 20s when I was born. He came to Canada as a refugee from Vietnam. He met my mom while they were both learning English in Vancouver (I still don’t know how they communicated). They dated, they got married, and they decided to have me (and my brother a few years later).
Like many immigrants, they started from nothing. This country opened its doors to my parents and supported them from the start. When I walked through the hallways of BC Women’s Hospital with my pregnant wife next to me, I imagine what it must have been like for my dad to be walking down the very same hallways with my pregnant mother.
My parents did not have the same access to information or resources that we have now. But somehow, they made it work.
The other day, a friend asked me what it felt like to hold Avery for the first time. If I could sum it up in one word, it would be gratitude.
I know of some people who are reading this and are trying to have kids. And I also know of some people who are going through IVF but with no luck. And I also know some people who just don’t want to have kids and are continually subject to the look of disapproval from society.
I see you. And I can only imagine how difficult it can be to see the endless pictures on social media of baby announcements so I don’t take this journey for granted.
Last month, I started a new project called 2 Dads 1 Car where I would interview dads in my car, learn about their journey and post up the interviews on YouTube and Spotify. I’m grateful for the friends who joined me on the show and shared their raw, unspoken truths about fatherhood. Little did I realize how impactful these conversations would be.
As cheesy as it sounds, they say that parenthood changes you. But if anything, parenthood has changed my relationship with my dad.
My dad had no idea what he was doing, but he did the best that he could. I also have no idea what I’m doing, but I’m grateful for the path that my dad laid out for me, my wife and Avery.
It takes a village to raise a child. I’m grateful for my dad, I’m grateful for my mom, and I’m grateful for all of you who have supported us on this journey.