I know why you’re here, and I refuse to disappoint. Most of you have heard the news, but if you’ve not checked your e-mail, or you’re just passing by, I am going to become a father sometime around August 8. It was great to finally be able to tell those of you I talked to yesterday, and to send the mass e-mail as well. I’m good at keeping secrets, but seven weeks is torture. It’s almost as if none of this was real since we weren’t telling anyone until S hit 12 weeks. So I’ve been experiencing a ton of emotions as it all kind of hit me.
I imagine those of you who haven’t talked to one of us yet want to full scoop. Well, maybe not the full scoop. I’ll let you figure out the beginning on your own. We found out on December 11. I had been traveling all week, we were headed to Kansas City the next day, and I was having an awful, awful day at work. I think I was sitting at my desk with my head in my hands, contemplating whether to quit right then, or wait until after the holidays, when S yelled at me from our bedroom if I was busy. I said yes, but did she need something right away. “I need your help for just a second if you can.” I needed the break, so I went upstairs and she was standing there giggling the way she does when she knows something I don’t. It didn’t register at all, so I didn’t notice. “Jackass,” the stuffed penguin we keep in our room, “has something he wants to tell you,” and she pointed at our bed. I could see a lump under the covers, so I pulled them down. Jackass got wrapped up in the blanket and kind of rolled over. I thought, “What the hell is going on?” Seeing her plan had gone awry, she reached in and grabbed this thing she had propped under Jackass’s arms and gave it to me. I looked, saw a digital readout that said “Pregnant” and just blinked. S shoved me and said, “We’re going to have a baby!” and started laughing. I still didn’t get it. It felt like an hour, but was probably only 2-3 seconds before it even registered. I don’t know what I said, when I finally said anything, but I’m sure it was extremely eloquent. Probably something like, “No shit?” Or maybe “Holy shit!” Shit was involved.
I think it was probably not until that evening when I finally reached the first level of understanding. Sure, we had been trying and had not been taking all the precautions we had both been taking for over a decade. But it all seemed too fast and too strange. To be honest, in some ways I’ve still not gotten past that first stage. I think a big part of it was not telling anyone. It was a secret, which made it seem not real in some ways. I don’t know, it’s a strange, strange feeling.
Anyway, we had to figure out how to handle the weekend in Kansas City, not to mention the holiday parties back in Indianapolis later in the month. At my step-dad’s on Friday night, S and I would casually exchange beers when mine was almost empty. I’m quite pleased of my performance at the Sinatra Party, making her a Sprite with a lime in secret and handing her “gin and tonic” to her in full view of others. Sean M. asked, “Are you drinking tonight, S?” She tipped her glass towards him and said, “Yes!” and he responded, “That answers that question!” I’m a fucking genius! It helps to be at a big party where lots of people are drinking heavily. The third degree is hard to pull off when you can’t put three coherent words together. We used a similar tactic at a Christmas party the next week, making sure S got the same glass that people who were ordering mixed drinks from the bar were drinking in. New Year’s was a tougher task, since one of the couples we rented the cabins in French Lick with had been really grilling us. When we told them yesterday, they said, “But you were drinking at New Year’s!” No she wasn’t. She was just using every trip to the restroom or near the sink to dump part of her drink when no one was looking. That’s tough to pull off over 36 hours in a small cabin, but she did it. She’s a fucking genius too!
We did tell our immediate families on Christmas Day. S was working that day, but was able to leave the hospital long enough to eat dinner with the family. We had saved the gifts for us as a couple until she arrived, and after opening those, I stood up and said we had a gift for the entire family. I grabbed by backpack and carried it to the table, all while telling some story about how S had forgotten to wrap the gift before she left for work that morning, and I’m a horrible wrapper, so I apologized for the way I was presenting it. I dug around in the backpack for a few seconds, then said, “But you can’t really wrap our gift, because we’re having a baby.” S’s step-mom, who is the most gung-ho about grandkids, started screaming, and everyone else started cheering. I couldn’t believe a couple of her sisters who were staying with us hadn’t called us out yet (Like when she had burst into tears over burnt cookies, or told them to stop talking about their grandmother’s bad breath and looked like she was going to puke). So that was fun. It was also fun to call my step-dad that night and tell him. He’s never had kids of his own, so he said, “I don’t really have any advise for you,” in kind of a sheepish tone. I think he’s still in the state of near shock I’ve been in.
As I mentioned, S did have a rough 5-6 weeks. As soon as we got back from Kansas City, she started having evening sickness. Each night, shortly after dinner, she would get these horrible waves of nausea. She never got sick, but she’d roll into a ball and not be able to move for hours. Other nights, she’d fall into the deepest sleep I’ve ever seen her in. Somehow, whenever we had guests or were at a party, she was able to either ignore it or convince it to take a night off. For the first, and I’m sure not the last time, I’m glad I’m not the one carrying the baby.
So that’s our story so far. It’s been a strange time and will only get stranger. But it’s also an incredibly happy and joyous time. Another common theme I’ve found in my sampling of the Blog universe are blogs by soon-to-be parents. I assure you I’ll keep everyone updated on little Fetus’ progress, S’s health, and all the ups and downs and unknowns of prospective parenthood.