I’m not sure where this will find you. I suspect I’ll have to print it as a keepsake for your mom. I suspect it’s normal for someone in my position, given the circumstances, to want to do this sort of thing for you. It may even be for me too. I feel led to do it. It could also just be weird.
The beginning is a great start. The best we can tell yours was around Thanksgiving 2010. The events and times around us were uneasy but never too much to bare. The “World” has gotten pretty crazy, at least from my eyes it has. I think every generation has said this. The talk is of jobs, economy, and hate. People have split themselves into two groups and are at war over the shades of gray in between the black and white. These are matters for another day. Let’s just say it feels like a big change is coming.
Your first moments are surrounded by good solid people that you can depend on. We’ve spent a lot of time keeping the poisonous people away from our lives before you showed up. This only after having been pawns in their game. Sometimes you learn the hard way. It’s better to have fewer better people around. The same is true of material items. I hope this gets instilled into your code in an easier way than it got into mine.
From Thanksgiving through Christmas we had no idea you were here, just under the surface waiting and growing.
In early 2011, on a cold January morning your mom yelled at me from across the house. This is a normal thing, so I paid little attention. After she came and pulled me away from my coffee and showed me a test stick there’s a moment of “nah it’s false” then a moment of pulling the instructions out of the trash, because I know your mom didn’t read them. Satisfied that the stick was legit we silently finished our morning routine and went work. You aren’t quite real.
Later that same day, we go to a doctor. They run a test and confirm with the science that you are indeed real. They put her at 5 weeks. We then schedule an appointment with the doctor she wants to use, for me it’s too far off in February. I want it all checked right now, the waiting is killing me. I don’t do so well with unknowns, you’ll learn this I’m sure. At the time of this writing (2-8-2011) you are about 10 weeks old and we have yet to see the doc.
My thoughts are consumed with you. I’m as restless as your mom. At this point only 8 people know you are coming. I want to tell more but we’ve opted out until we get that first doctor visit. I’m alone in the joy of my knowledge of you. I’m practicing prenatal communication whenever I lay my hand on your moms belly and say “Luke I am your father.” I’m not sure if you are a boy or a girl and I really don’t have a preference so don’t be offended. We’ll go over the Luke thing later. In just 5 or so weeks you have become a lot more real. So real in fact that I think my bottled up excitements, fears, and hopes may be causing my heart to act funny.
Tomorrow is February 22. Our first visit to the doctor to officially welcome you. I’m still waiting on word about my heart and actually have an appointment for that as well as you. In the last few days we’ve been texting boy names back and forth and are finding it hard to choose mainly because we know somebody with the name and don’t want you associated with them. We’re weird like that. We do however have a girl name picked out. After minimal arguing we settled on Ruby Fallon Grice. I don’t “get” the Fallon part but your mom loves it. I dig Ruby. Little Roo.
A few more people know of you now and we readying the news to our jobs, people might treat your mom different in the workplace so we are cautious. Tomorrow is a big day, I think we’ll see a picture of you via sonogram. You’ll be a gray blob in space of black, faceless but not nameless unless your a boy. In the meantime I still say “Luke or Leia I am your father!” into your mom’s belly. We’ve made a promise to not be those parents that post pics of it all over social media for the flood of virtual congrats. We’ll privately advertise to our inner circles of trust and hope for the real affection of real humans who matter to us. You are becoming more real.
We’ve announced you to our work and close friends that you are coming, we got to see you on the 22nd. So amazing to see you move and wave and crawl around. You look like a little alien in there. Your mom is being very strong and not complaining about things the other moms are complaining about. Doc said everything is normal and that’s the way we like it. I think next time we see you we may find out if you are a girl or a boy. That will be great news, your mom is a planner and would like to know so she can pick out what color stuff you get. I want you to be strong, those gender colors are meaningless to me. Your mom doesn’t know this but when I put my hand on her belly I imagine my love and thoughts flowing through it into her and into you. It’s important to me that you know I’m here.
I find myself daydreaming about the day you’ll come begging for a new video game console or to watch a movie. I really hope you are wired up like me regarding these things but if not I’ll take you however you are. I want the pregnancy to be over, I’m ready to have you here. I find myself consumed with the calendar. Counting weeks. The magic 9 months keeps popping up, but in reality it’s less. Less each day. Your mom brought some clothes home for you the other day. Even a goofy Christmas outfit. Some of the people we know have decided to give us a crib and other things for you. Don’t hate us because we didn’t buy all new gear, we have tried to be smart and this makes sense. Time are tough, so saving a buck does matter. Besides, a crib that was used for another baby that is just sitting around is being wasted. Waste is a big deal in the world and we don’t want to contribute if we don’t have to. We even visited some daycares and got on their waiting list. Funny how we have to plan so far ahead.
We had a doctor visit scheduled. Your mom has had pretty bad pain in the left of her back. We’ve been worried about it so we moved the visit up a day. She didn’t ask for me to go back so I did not get to hear your heartbeat. She said it was “fine.” I’m pretty pissed about it. I feel robbed. No one ever told me I could just go back there. Out of respect I stayed put in the waiting room. I didn’t want to miss it and I was looking forward to it so much. Doc said her pain is her kidneys “expanding from fluid.” It should go away pretty soon. It has been bothering her a lot.
We’re in the process of getting a contractor to come finish a room out in the house. You are taking up space in the real world already.
Internets told us you can hear now. Your mom and I have been riding to work to save a buck due to gas being really high, on those commutes we have some quiet time and very light conversation. I’ve been choosing albums to listen to on these rides, hopefully you like them. Most of the records were pretty influential to me when I was a teenager. I’ll do my best to keep the good stuff flowing. You are also aware that we have dogs, you can’t miss their barks or our yelling at them. You also probably know your mom is a loud talker. She loves to do this. It’s a feature. I wonder if you get accustomed to it seeing as you are getting built inside her? I have yet to.
I also want to say that this is not in any way representative of how both of us feel. I have no way to put Rita on paper. These are just some random slices of where I am as I wait for you to get here. We’re supposed to get an amniocentesis pretty soon. This is scary to me. Actually terrifying is a better word. I’m praying this goes well and really dreading it too. It seems every thing I do gets interrupted with thoughts about you. I’m consumed. I feel good about it too. You’re six moons away and everything in my life except you feels like water is washing it away or it’s rising like smoke from a fire, just doesn’t matter, they can wait.
Today we hope to find out if you are a boy or girl. Honestly I just want healthy. Though knowing will settle a few debates your mom and I have had lately. We’ve been waiting for this. So much so the rest of the world can just pass us by.
In the meantime we’ve had a few folks come see the unfinished room in the attic so it can be finished. This will free up a room for you. Already we have been gifted a crib and changing table along with some toys. I suspect even more stuff will find its way home to us once your flavor is determined.
There’s been banter and begging on the social networks about your mom posting pictures of her “bump.” She’s apprehensive at best. For this I applaud her. We want you all to ourselves. The things we can control we fully intend to, to keep the wolves at bay.
We now know, as far as our science can tell, that you are a girl. This pleases us to no end. Now we know what color stuff to get. Your name is chosen. We hope you like it. We hope it won’t be a burden or be a source of ridicule. Ruby Fallon Grice.
You being a girl will be a learning experience for me. I have no frame of reference other than a boy. It will rule out a few things I thought important to teach should you have been a boy, such as peeing on trees. I suppose I’ll find another kernel of wisdom that is more lady like.
The doctor said you are growing normally and everything looks great. This pleases us more than your gender, it’s been my biggest hangup. I just wanted a healthy baby. It appears I’m getting it. We got a fancy picture of you also, one of those 4-d pics. Kinda cool, it lets us see your face as it is at 18-19 weeks. We are pretty much halfway home to getting your here and it feels as if it is flying by and the rest of the world is in the back seat. Your mom is a soldier, a secret strength I can only imagine, is driving her while she builds you. It puts me in awe of the miracle that is going on.
The daydreaming of what it will be like having a kid around is increasing. It’s exciting and scary. It marks the end of Rita and I as we know it. The toys we’ve been given look so very out of place in our house. To this point we’ve only had dogs, you’ll be a bit more complicated than them. Though they have taken an interest in the toys. To this point we’ve only had each other. Our selfishness is waning and should be gone in about 4 moons. Know that I love you and can’t tell you in any way except to pet your mom’s belly and through my imagined telepathy.
Finally, I have felt your presence in the physical world. Your mom has been aware for longer and I’ve been left out of the fun. Early one morning last Thursday she grabbed my hand and placed it on her belly, I felt 4 very brief and faint taps. So cool.
I’ve taken steps in my life to be of more help in yours. I took a job closer to home and one with less stress. Less poisonous people. So far it is great. We’ll save a buck on gas and I can be closer to you. One daycare, if you get in, is right across the street from the job. The others are very close too, within a mile or two.
You move a lot when we play music, I take it you like it. Recently it’s been Foo Fighters and Beastie Boys, this is some of the good stuff I mentioned above.
The last little bit has been quiet, your mom is holding up well and has no complaints except when you kick. Our visits to the doctor are about to increase as we get into the home stretch. The contractor is here working on our spare room and some other odds and ends. Hopefully he’ll get done soon and we can setup your room. We’ve been buying things a little along to prep for you and we still feel like we will be caught off guard. I think this normal and to be expected. There is so much stuff out there for babies it’s overwhelming. I don’t even know what size clothes to get, so I get them a little bigger because I know you’ll grow into them.
Your mom has deliberated quite intently on the bedding you get, this matters a lot to her. The traditional color for girls is pink and is not my favorite, I hope you protest when possible. At any rate that call is not one of mine, I’m a dumb man.
I just want you here already. Once you get here I can sneak a Wookie or a Pooh bear into your room.
Wow what a month. Mom was diagnosed with gestational diabetes last week. She was pretty busted up thinking it was her fault. All that isn’t true. it’s a hormonal thing. It should go away after you get here. In the meantime she HAS to take a blood sugar reading 4 times a day and this involves needles. She also has to be very careful with what she eats. This is hard for her as she can’t be told what to do by anybody, but she is doing her best, for you. If her sugar gets out of whack it can cause your development to get out of whack, particularly the pancreas. This can lead to you being overweight or putting you at risk for getting diabetes as you age. It also means means mom may get diabetes later in life. The diagnosis is a good thing because it will help your mom change her ways to avoid diabetes and that will keep her around longer for both of us.
We didn’t have this knowledge when we were coming up and we are glad to know about it now, to help get you off to a good start.
On a brighter note, you have room. A pink and green room. You have so much phat loot already. Toys and clothes and a Wookie even. The dog ate the Wookie but I’ll get you another, I promise. I find myself opening the door to this empty room and trying to imagine you here in it.
People spend a lot of time caught up in patterns because they are comfortable and safe and they provide a little view into the future. I’m guilty of this. Until you came along I was in a pattern. Now I have no bearing and it feels like another world is opening up.
The gestational diabetes is under control through diet and mom only has to stick herself twice a day now, down from 4. We’ve been at some parenthood classes at the hospital and it’s interesting to say the least. There are so many differences between every pregnancy it’s amazing, they are like snowflakes. In these classes we get to see other parents and the facilities where you will enter our world. Some of this stuff is scary as hell. The tools the drugs. Your mom is so strong I can’t even imagine. The role I play is minimal and there isn’t much I can do except be there for her.
She’s having braxton hicks at times so we know you are getting to arrive, due to the GD the doc moved up your birthday by 2 weeks. That will put you at 38 weeks. He also wants to induce labor to minimize any risk related to the GD, it’s possible that the insulin levels can speed up your growth and stress your pancreas. This means mom will have some drugs to get you moving. I panic, quite openly at this and have dug in on the research regarding induction. Tons of people have it done with no problems so I take comfort there but I’m a worrier so take that as you may.
All this makes me wonder how in the world births have been going on since we started walking on this rock. Words like miraculous surface.
On a lighter note, we dropped by a used bookstore and I saw some old (1980’s) Choose Your Own Adventure books, I bought those for you. You can read them on rainy days. I had a lot of fun with them when I was coming up, hopefully books are still cool when you get old enough for them. The world is going digital and the great tangibles of my youth are floating in the ether now.
I remember from a book, Dune. The main character gained the ability to see all possible outcomes of situations. This is how I felt before you. I was master of my time and space and would follow the plan. Now I can’t see any path but one. We charge ahead as three.
On our last trip to the doc, we were told that Sept 1st you would arrive. Today doc says it’s a choice. The “plan” was for your mom to be induced due to the gestational diabetes, for fear of you getting too big. We love having that flag in the sand.
Mom is choosing to go ahead. This is a call only she can make, it’s her body. So, tomorrow night we go the hospital and she’ll be given Cervidil, followed by Pitocin the next morning. If all goes well you’ll be here sometime Thursday afternoon, I am beside myself with anticipation.
Mom has done a great job following all the rules, her daily sugar tests are always well within the range and she’s eating cleaner, for you and herself. She’s really uncomfortable at this stage and claims you’re being rough on her. She has barely complained about anything so when she does I listen.
These inductions can be long and drawn out affairs so I’m really hoping she is ready. I just have to wait and be supportive, she has a lot of work to do to get you here. I know she’s strong.
The next couple of days will be the last we spend as two people, we’ve had 13 years and we’ve said our farewells. The new models are coming.
So Ruby, here’s to you. Here’s hoping we get you healthy and keep you that way, we are ready for you to get here and get the next chapter going. We have a lot of hopes to pin to you and many dreams of where we ‘d like to see you go. Come on home baby.