(Photo courtesy of WWE.com )
WWE's No Way Out pay-per-view this year falls on June 17, the same day as Father's Day. This year will be a very special celebration for WWE's newest dad, Ted DiBiase. His son, Tate, was born May 15. DiBiase couldn't be happier to be a dad. Nothing could have prepared him for the moment he met his baby boy.
“Everyone was telling [me], 'Hey your life is gonna change, it's gonna be the most amazing moment in your life.' I was like, 'Yeah, I'm sure it will be,'" DiBiase said. “Literally had no expectations. I remember sitting outside the hallway and they told me to come in, and my wife actually had high blood pressure [and] the baby came three weeks early. So there was a little stress involved. And I heard him cry for the first time, and it was like water works. I was this big, tough guy, and they brought him over, they cleaned him up, and here I am holding this kid. It really is one of the greatest moments in my life. Definitely one of my proudest achievements so far, 'cause he was completely healthy and my wife was completely healthy afterwards. Nothing went wrong [with the birth], and there was a lot that could have gone wrong.”
DiBiase is currently recovering from multiple injuries. A few days after breaking his wrist, he broke his ankle after landing on it awkwardly as he jumped from the second rope. The ankle suffered six fractures and three torn ligaments, one that ruptured. DiBiase didn't require surgery for those injuries, but did opt for shoulder surgery to repair a nagging injury, one that he chose to brave through instead of taking time off the road. With the ankle injury forcing him off the road, he felt the time was right.
“I got that done, shoulder was good, just orthopaedics. I was just in and out. I was probably out four weeks or so, so I was ready to go. I’m back in the gym, [the] ankle is probably 85 percent and I'm looking at maybe another month out, I think. If I had to, I think I could probably go today, but I think WWE is giving me some time to make sure it's healed, which has been a godsend because now I have more time to play dad," DiBiase says with a laugh.
That time, of course, is limited. DiBiase will soon join his fellow Superstars on the road, and that arduous schedule requires sacrifice and time away from family, no matter how new that family may be.
“That thought is very haunting [to] me everyday," DiBiase admitted. “You know that's part of what we signed up for, though. I didn't understand how intense I guess that feeling would be. I'm very blessed to have a job that is my dream job, and I love doing what I love to do. The downside is that I'm constantly away from my family. The fear is being away and missing a lot of those small moments with Tate. Missing the first time he sits up or takes his first step. I wanna see it all so bad. I didn't know how much I'd love waking up in the morning, picking him up from his crib and holding him up for a while, and just sitting there with him. I'm gonna miss a lot of days doing that. That's what we do. You know that's the part where people say they wanna be a professional wrestler, that's one of those things you have to do. If you're like me, family means more than anything to you. That's a huge sacrifice that you make, 'cause time is something you can't get back.
This theme is not new to DiBiase. His father, WWE Hall of Famer “The Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase, also had this perplexing dilemma with Ted and his brothers Mike and Brett. With Grandpa's schedule less hectic, he now has the opportunity to enjoy time with his grandson.
“'The Milion Dollar Man' Ted DiBiase has a new name, ladies and gentleman, and it's 'Big Daddy,'" DiBiase said. "I’ve never seen a more grown man cry so much, out of tears of joy (when he first met his grandson). Every time he picks Tate up, his eyes just well up in pride, he's just so happy. And to be home and to have that time with him is special. For me there was a lot of time missed between him and me when I was a kid. So he feels this is where he can make up for that time, and I couldn't be happier for him.”
Not too far into the distant future, Tate will be thinking of Father's Day gifts for dad. But what did Ted and his siblings get “The Million Dollar Man” for Father's Days gone by?
“Even though he's not good at using them, my dad is a huge gadgets guy. He always loves the new technology, like the newest iPad or iMac. We have always been really good at like getting him a new TV, like when people use DVD players, orBlu-Ray Players.”
This year, DiBiase has a different plan.