Thursday, January 31, 2013

No Sleep Til Nukland?

I just want to put it out there that you may notice a bit of a decline in the quality of my writing.  So please brace yourself, my normally impeccable prose may suffer due to some serious lack of sleep.  The first few days were a sea of bliss, well for me, not sure my wife would say the same thing.  Mr. Simon was sleeping 4-6 hours throughout the night, stirring every now and then with cute little grunts.  But then came last night…
The sheer force of my tiny son's wail is beyond impressive.  I will have to buy the neighbors something nice as his late night screaming was a deafening blend of anger and agony.  Oh, want to change my diaper?  Hear my roar!  I found myself apologizing to him in the middle of the night, standing over him with a wet wipe in hand, scared to death that I was seriously hurting him.
Today, I’m disoriented and sleep deprived.  Earlier I went to the bathroom only to find my boxers shorts were on backwards.  I’m having trouble staying on task in my loopy state.  I sometimes walk on the moon while wearing yellow socks.  What was I saying?  Oh yeah, I need sleep.
Things have changed on the marriage front as well.  With my wife breast feeding, the term boob shirt has taken on an entirely new meaning.  The other day I walked in and…you know what?  I’m going to leave my wife out of this one.  She is doing a wonderful job in her role as mom, and although last night was taxing for the both of us, one day we’ll look back and laugh.  I'll save it for later...
I've already had several people tell me to enjoy every moment, even the late night sleepless ones, so I’ll take their advice.  And while my productivity may plummet at work, and my blog has already been said to have gone to poop, all it takes is one look at my little guy to get me through the day...I already know I'm not getting through the night.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Wow, where did that week go?

Today I went back to work armed with over 100 pictures and videos in my phone to get me through the day.  I took frequent breaks to peek at pics, showing them to anyone willing to give me the chance. This did little to quench my appetite for cuteness, but bills have to be paid. I had been enjoying my sloth bubble at home for far too long, and it's time to get back in the swing of things. 
Today was actually our son's due date, so technically I got a bonus week with him. I still can’t believe he’s finally here.  For so long I’ve been dreaming of holding him, trying to imagine what he would look like, hearing his sounds, and taking it all in. I had mentally prepared myself for fatherhood the best I knew how, but in the back of my mind I worried just how I would do when the time actually arrived. 
For all of my worrying I think I’m going to be okay.  The diaper thing?  No sweat, well there was that one change yesterday when the umbilical cord came off just as a stream of pee shot into the air, hitting the dresser and possibly his face, but overall I think I've got it.  Holding him is the most natural feeling in the world, and when he looks up at me with those bright eyes it only helps strengthen my confidence. 
I especially want to thank my in-laws.  They made the 13 hour drive down from upstate New York on a moment’s notice.  They cleaned the house, cooked dinners (no small feat if anyone knows my wife’s control issues when it comes to the kitchen), and did tons of laundry.  They also comforted me as it was nice to have experience to turn to.
I remember thinking that I couldn’t wait for the first 6 months to pass; I thought he would just be a eating/pooping/sleeping blob.  Well he may do all of those things, but he already does some things that are uniquely his own and I don’t want to miss a day of it.
I’ve only been a dad for a week so I know there is a lot to learn but, so far so good. I love being a dad, and I love having a family.  I know that times are bound to get difficult but I’m realizing that whether I knew it or not, I do have the capacity for it.  And that, along with my wonderful wife, leaves me thinking that this kid may just be okay.

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Tale of Two Nights...

care board

Night one.

We did it!  No you did it!  He’s beautiful….. I can’t believe he’s here…..We’re parents!  Wow…he’s so quiet.  What if he’s one of those magical babies?  Is there such a thing?  I think so….he’s got your nose….he’s got your eyes….he looks like you…No, he looks like you….I love his little sounds…me too…someone’s at the door…Yes, the room is so nice!....Oh, a sleep sofa….wow....this is like a hotel!....He sleeps so much!  He’s perfect….you’re perfect….I can’t believe we did it!

Night two.

What time is it?….What day is it?...Someone's at the door...again?.... That light is so bright…turn it off....not that one….now they’re both off…Who’s at the door?….He pooped again…is that poop? What is that?......I thought this was a sleep sofa? The phone is ringing…..I’m just going to close my eyes for a minute….I’m awake!....Is he okay? This must be what GITMO feels like….Oh, I didn't say anything...the baby’s crying….I’m feeding the baby…..Did you write it down?....Which boob?....Someone’s at the door…..the baby’s crying……Come can he cry that loud! Get the phone....He pooped again…..did you write it down?  I’m just going to close my eyes….I’m awake!  

Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Journey Begins...

People always say that having kids changes everything, that you see the world differently after children come into your life. But advice can only be given and taken, not lived.  A few blurry days ago, I quickly learned that nothing had prepared me for the intensity of what I felt in that delivery room.

I had decided long ago that I wasn’t going to look down.  I have a weak stomach, so I devised a plan that would allow me to be supportive yet comfortable.  I would be the around the shoulder coach, the hand holder, the strong, silenced by immovable fear type.  But in the heat of the moment, as the pushing and the screaming coincided with the contracting and the breathing, I peeked.  And it changed my life.

I watched my son come into this world, dumbstruck with a deluge of emotions.  I was speechless, teary eyed, light headed, and woozy.  I wiped sweaty locks of hair from my wife’s face as I tried to encourage her, my hands shaking and my voice faltering. It was surreal and natural at the same time.

There in that busy room, the source of all my worrying and wondering came out in one perfectly slimed, purple, amniotic package of tiny arms and legs that absolutely terrified me for the few precious seconds before filling the room with a raucous roar.
As the monitors beeped and hummed, blending with the primitive sounds of brand new life, the frenzied flow of hospital staff bustled about the room as I cut the cord and officially welcomed my son to the world.

In the calm that followed, the nurses and the doctors finished up and gave our small exhausted family a moment in peace, far and away the best moment of my life. Now the real journey begins...  

Friday, January 25, 2013

Welcome Baby Simon!

He’s finally here!  Just as I was running out of things to write about, Simon Jacob was born on Wednesday, January 23rd,, a week early but not a minute too soon.  At 20 inches and 7.5 pounds, he’s the perfect size for his mommy and me, and we are very much enjoying getting to know our beautiful baby boy.  (I think he looks like his mother).

We are home and resting, and have some stories to tell. But right now I can’t take my mind off of him long enough to write anything.  Here's what we’ve learned so far:

Likes:  Mommy, cuddle time, yawning, sticking tongue out at daddy, and of course, the boob.

Dislikes: Mean old nurses, diaper changes, bright lights, and the Washington Redskins.

Well that’s all for now, I've got a son to get to know!

Oh yeah, and Father really does know little, very little. 

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Book Smarts...

Recently, I went to the library to pick up a few instructional books and managed to thoroughly confuse myself. There is no shortage of books out there to educate the masses on the art of raising a baby.  Babywise, What to expect, Happiest baby, and many more of these books line the shelves, each with its own take on raising a well behaved baby.  I checked out three, no four, wanting to cover my bases.  But as I look through the mystery stained pages, I’m more convinced than ever that my baby is never going to be normal.

These books have different ways of doing one thing, sticking to a schedule.  Sleep, eat, play.  My dog does this too, but also squeeze in time to sniff the cat's  butt. (Wait, do kids do that too?)  These books stress rigid routines and schedules, and some of them are not shy about explaining the consequences if that schedule isn't followed.  I’m already quite neurotic, and if you haven’t noticed, my imagination likes to run wild.

I imagined my son after being raised on unscheduled feedings. He's left free to roam without the all important structure in his life.  Combine his mother’s stubbornness and any of my laundry list of afflictions, he will quickly become a nightmare.  A screaming demon child who lashes out because he played after sleeping, or even worse, played while eating. I'll only have myself to blame because I didn’t stick to the schedule.  What will become of him then?  The consequences could be devastating.

Somewhere there’s a lost interview with Jack the Ripper’s mother berating Mr. Ripper for not following the feeding rules or waketime.

I’m not saying this stuff doesn’t work, I’m sure it does, actually I have no idea.  But my wife has something that I don’t.  Common Sense?  Well yes, but also a motherly instinct.  As I read passages from these books to her, more often than not she’s able finish the paragraph for me, laughing as I stare at her in amazement.  It's as if there is some secret code that nobody bothered to mention to me. And I'm beginning to thing that she just might know how to take care of what’s growing inside her.

But I'll continue to read the book.  And who knows? It just may make a parent out of me yet.  That'll show her!


A quick look at the countdown:

Looking at this makes me realize....that I need to charge my phone!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Belly

pregnancy belly
As we approach week 38, my wife’s belly has been issued its own zip code.  It swallows shirts and collects dust off of tables.  It attracts, pulling in paint, dirt, and any other substances that come near its gravitational pull.  It’s a force to be reckoned with, fighting zippers and buttons in its quest to be open and free.  It’s round and robust, and it usually arrives a few seconds before my wife walks into the room.

At some point during the 2nd trimester, my wife's body was hijacked, starting with a cute little bump that showed up one morning.  It continued to grow and swell and now it's like a hardened shell. It's like a bumper, coming between us during.....relax, I was going to say hugs.  It doubles as a table, (she makes a mean peanut butter and jelly shirt). 

It makes bending tricky, sleeping difficult, and comfort impossible.  Simple things that I take for granted are out of the question for my wife, like say, tying shoes. It hides things, last night it swallowed a remote control. On a recent trip to Lowes, I thought about suggesting a wheelbarrow for lugging it around, but I value sleeping in the house, and let’s face it, I get away with far too much on this blog anyway.

But through it all, as her belly has swollen beyond anything I would have thought possible, I can’t help but look at it and smile, because I know what's inside, or at least I think I do.  I enjoy talking to her belly, or guessing what body part I’m feeling.  At this stage my wife is ready to be done,as she feels bloated and disgusting.  But I think its sexy.  My wife, her belly, and our child.

Friday, January 11, 2013


I’m teetering, unable to pull myself up on  the cliff as my fragile grip crumbles on the ledge.  I remain still, careful.  Any movement may disrupt the delicate hold I have on my balance.  In the distance I hear a buzzing sound, faint, but growing.  I glance down, into the staggering depths below, panicking as I realize my darkest fears.  

I watch in horror as my grasp begins to slide, and I begin to relinquish any hopes of survival. The buzzing has grown to a deafening roar, grinding and sawing, it breathes warm spurts of hellish thunder on my face as it looms over me.  I have to make a choice, the end is near…until. 
My eyes snap open, I’m holding a fistful of sheet while clutching the end of the mattress.  With one foot on the floor, I catch my breath as I realize I won't be plummeting to my death.  My wife lies on top of me, breathing heavy snores into my ear.  I start to ease out of bed, ever so gently as not to wake her. I make my move to the guest room down the hall, to my sweet sleep sanctuary. Suddenly the snoring stops, I hear my wife maneuvering out of bed for her hourly bathroom visit.

"Was I snoring again?”  She asks, disoriented.
"Maybe just a little…" I answer, wiping the sweat from my brow.