1. I have a happy, healthy baby.
2. I have a great and supportive family.
3. I have an amazing wife.
As you've probably guessed by now, my wife had the baby. I am the proud father of a beautiful little girl. She was 8 pounds 4 ounces, and born with all of her fingers and toes. Her name is unique enough that I won't put it on the internet, but I promise, it's a good one
Having a child is more or less what everyone said it would be, but I found out that even though what was said was true, it didn't exactly translate. The bad stuff is often forgotten. Parents say you don't get much sleep, but you probably get less than they remember. Exhaustion sets in sooner and with greater force than imagined. You hear of shaken baby syndrome and wonder how anyone could ever do it, and then you stay up all night with a crying infant for whom you've literally done all you can think of and she still cries, and just as your frustration reaches its zenith you turn to your spouse, or your mom, or your friend and say, "Can you hold her for a bit? I've lost patience." And as you hand her over you think of all those single parents who have no spouse, or family, or friends, and while the tragedy of shaken baby syndrome is not forgiven, it is suddenly better understood.
At the same time though, it's better than can be explained. It's amazing to see your wife work so hard, and for so long, for something so precious. Holding my daughter for the first time made me believe stronger in God, and yet, made me question. My daughter had an obvious personality from the moment she was born. I could feel that she was unique, and knew to thank God. And then I remembered that she was under my stewardship, and then I wondered why a loving God would do something so cruel to someone so perfect. Finally, I remembered that she would be under my wife's stewardship too, and my faith was restored.
She has little outfits and little blankets. Tiny dresses for church and a tiny crib that attaches to our bed. Socks and headbands that won't stay on and a look of amazement that doesn't come off. I feel out of place in my own home. I see her swing, bouncer, crib, diaper bag, carrier, and little jacket on our coat stand and know who the boss of our lives is.
I love her. When people said that you love your child the moment it's born, I thought it was sentimental nonsense, but now I know it's true. Not in the way you think though. I didn't feel a cosmic bond that surged through each vein and made my knees week. The feeling is more profound, more dignified. It was a quiet admiration for the creation of life, and the need to protect that life. It was honest gratitude to a Father in Heaven. I knew, in that moment, that my wife and I would wear out the rest of our days trying to help her find a happy and productive life, and I don't know if I've ever been more excited about a challenge.
Anyway, thanks to all of you who worried and have wondered where I've been. She has turned out to be more work than expected, thought I should be back in the swing of writing my blog, and reading yours. Thanks for waiting around.
Have a nice day.