DWTS alum, actor and US Army Vet. J.R. Martinez is a proud papa! Dad to 2-year old daughter, Lauryn Annabelle ‘Belle’, opens up to parenting expert Daddy Nickell for the new web series My Life As A Dad.
Reflecting on the last two years, Martinez says, “It’s crazy how the time flies. As a parent you have to enjoy the moments. When you’re catching up to one thing all of a sudden she’s learning something else and she’s doing something else and you’ve got to catch up to that.”
J.R. recounts the moments following his daughter’s delivery, sharing that after she was placed under the heating lamp, she started crying. He noticed when he spoke to comfort her, she actually looked around for him. “Speak to them while they’re in the tummy because they recognize your voice,” he advises.
Martinez assures new dads to trust their instincts and trust themselves. “As long as you’re preparing and learning, you’ll be fine. If you make a mistake it’s not the end of the world. Children are resilient, they adapt, they just make it work.” He confesses, “There were a couple times when I put the diaper on backwards!”
J.R concludes by offering up this piece of advice for first time fathers, “Don’t be shy. Don’t be afraid. Don’t leave it up to mom 100%. You [dads] can do this as well.”