Before Jett was born, how did you know you were ready to become parents? Were there fears about what was to come?
Siggi: I wouldn’t say there were fears. I just love babies so I was really excited when we decided to have children.
Marty: Well I think for a mother it’s different, it naturally clicks where it’s supposed to. But as a dad you have different worries because not only are you worried about your daughter but you’re worried about the mom being okay.
Do you look at Siggi differently now that she’s become a mother?
Marty: I always say when I look at her I got a different set of eyes than when I look at the rest of the world. That’s the only time I truly feel like time stops. I’ve seen a lot of growth in her as a mother; she’s doing a great job. There’s a lot of stuff that she does of which I’m extremely proud of her but I still want her to be everything that she wants to be too. She’s so young so at the same time [she’s] a mother but [she] still has to chase her dreams and goals. Trying to find a balance with that and help her achieve those things as well is my job as the husband.
And how has Marty been handling fatherhood?
Siggi: We have three nieces that we spend a lot of time with and I always enjoyed seeing him around them and how much fun they have with him when he’s around. Marty comes and he reads them stories at night and he does 20 different voices. He’s been awesome. He’s adapted. We have to communicate about a lot of different things, whether it’s Jett’s needs or my needs. If I’m having a rough day and I just need a second to myself, you know, he’s there. He can take her for a walk, take her to play with the dogs, he can put her to sleep. He’s very hands on.
What are your favorite things about Chicago? Would you settle down here permanently once your football career is over?
Siggi: We own this home. This is our forever house, so we plan to be here forever.
Marty: Yeah, this is where our roots will be. I love Chicago. I never had a house in Texas; I didn’t buy a place in New York. We got here and we saw this house and it just screamed our names. This was the first city where it was like a little bit of everything. We can be in the suburbs and I can take her fishing and I can take her to do a lot of stuff but she also has the city life. It’s not too fast but it’s enough for her to grow up with fashion, architecture, arts and everything. It’s a well-rounded place and I think that’s the best thing about it.
Chicago is going to be the silicon valley of the Midwest. There are a lot of tech startups, a lot of things like that happening which I like to get involved in. That’s the type of stuff I’m gonna be doing when I’m done with football.
Tell me a little more about that. Where do your interests lie? You’ve written children’s books?
Marty: I’ve written several children’s books but I haven’t put any of them out yet.
Siggi: One of them is completely finished with the artwork and everything.
Marty: But I made that one to where it’s a 3D pop-up book online because I want to make a place where kids can read for free. When I was a kid and I’d read I’d say “Oh, I wish everything flew around the page,” so I created that for them. My first book that’s coming out, its’ called Unimaginary which is basically me introducing everyone to all my imaginary friends that I have personally.
Siggi: There are a lot of them (laughs).
Marty: Which I thought would be the best one to come out with first before I did all the children’s books so everybody can get to know me a little more and the stories of my friends and our experiences. That one should be out this fall; it’s 10 short stories.
Will you read the stories to Jett?
Marty: Yeah, I wrote one story (of the 10) just for her birthday. It will be a film as well and her first birthday party will be the movie premiere.
Will the public be able to watch it?
Marty: First it will premiere and then it will be on my website where people can see it as well. Some of these stories are for adults too. I call them “kidult” books -- for adults who are kids.
We’ve received some great feedback about your blog on ChicagoParent.com. What do you get out of writing the posts each month?
Marty: I enjoy it; I just enjoy writing.
Siggi: It’s nice with the blog because I always share it on my Facebook page. My Instagram is open but my Facebook is only for family and friends. We don’t have any family out here and very few friends so it’s kind of a way for everybody we’ve engaged with in our lives over the past 6 years to keep up with what’s going on and connect with us in this new role as parents. ‘Cause you know, you can post pictures all day. It’s cute but like, how are you really doing? How are you really feeling? And when you don’t have time to talk to everybody, they’ve been reading the blog and they really love it.
Jackie is the digital editor at Chicago Parent. She lives in Oak Park with her daughter and husband and is expecting their second child in Spring 2015. Follow along on her blog, Momma Knows Best, as she tests out the best products for moms and babies on the market to find the ones parents can't live without.
See more of Jackie's stories here.
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