Wednesday, December 8, 2010

My daughter

I saw a quote while around the delivery area of the hospital. I thought of how close it came to being the truth, without actually hitting the truth on the head for me. The quote stated simply, “Babies fill a hole in our hearts that we did not know we had.”

I have often told people that when I left Idaho, I had begun to feel like an uncaring remorseless person; that I was without a heart anymore. I often get looks as if the person wanted to say, “Whatever, you’re too nice to be like that”. They don’t understand though, I would think of things just to see if they stirred any emotion. Quite often I could find no reaction stirring in me. It troubled me because I knew they should, but I was left feeling hollow and remorseless.

Meeting my nieces for the first time changed that. Once I made it to Florida, I met my eldest niece within weeks of arriving. Her arrival so close to mine was perhaps meant to be, as when I met her, I suddenly found that thing that I did care about. The thought of anything happening to her left me shaking. My niece filled a hole that I knew was there. She took that hole and opened wider it to new possibilities. That hole was no longer a wound, but a sort of delivery entrance for all those things that truly matter in life.

It’s not a matter of me being pedantic that I say I would never have gotten married if not for my nieces. I wouldn’t have had my heart opened to those possibilities. I certainly wouldn’t have followed my heart to Ohio (simply to be near my nieces again). I wouldn’t have known how they filled that void if I hadn’t lived apart from them a year, feeling that hole slowly turn into a wound again. It was really, the way it was meant to be.

At the same time, people always told me, and I always knew, that it would be different with my own child. It was hard to fathom but I knew it was a universal truth. I began to feel in my heart that there was one more hole there. I knew where that hole was, I knew what it would take to fill it, but I simply didn’t know the shape or the size of the hole.

It was such an easy decision to have a baby knowing it would fill that hole. I didn’t know how I would feel, but I knew it would surpass anything I could imagine. This was how I went into the OR. I was waiting with baited breath to finally understand. It was exciting seeing my baby for the first time. It was exciting to give her a bath and touch her, look at her perfect hands, mouth, feet, toes… Yet I still didn’t know how I felt yet.

In the evening when we finally had some time alone, our guests had left. I sat in a rocking chair staring at my newborn daughter, talking quietly to her. I began to think back to giving her bath. The nurse had pointed out how her eyes were immediately drawn to me when I spoke. She would ignore anything anyone else said, but when I spoke her eyes came to rest on me quickly.

I looked back to my daughter, staring at me intently as I talked sweetly to her. Then I saw something I had never seen in my nieces eyes when I held them. She knew me.

I said it out loud, “You know your daddy”.

It struck me deep inside and I finally realized what people tried to tell me but couldn’t explain. My daughter was the key to that last hole in my heart. She turned open the lock and I found suddenly all the love I had kept locked away for so long. It came bubbling forth and I cried tears of sheer joy that I couldn’t have imagined. I couldn’t help myself no matter how I tried to contain it, as I realized, she knew her daddy.

My daughter filled that hole in my heart. It was a hole I always knew was there, what I didn’t realize, was that it was really a doorway to the rest of my love that I would keep secreted away.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

New baby announcement.

“The Womb Inc”

Earlier today President and owner of the The Womb, Deana announced that chief operating officer and occupant of The Womb, Regen Michelle Tannehill had been dismissed. “The Womb” President Deana had the following statement;

“During her tenure here in the Womb, we have seen remarkable growth in Regen. From the early stages of The Womb’s first project she has been a central figure. We have asked much, with Regen frequently dividing early in the projects’ course. While we are sad to see Regen leave The Womb, we have the warmest regards for her, and wish her the best in her future endeavors. Though she no longer occupies a position here at The Womb, she will always be a part of our family and we will give her whatever support we can.”

Regen came to the media spotlight last April, when she was announced to be the first occupant of The Womb, now a wholly owned subsidiary of Tannehill and Tannehill. Speculation at the time was that the decision to fill The Womb, especially with a girl, was a politically motivated move. This speculation has been widely denounced by Deana, “Sex never had anything to do with the decision, we were happy to have the most qualified person for the position, not the first person that applied.” Detractors point to the non-committal response from Chief Technical Officer of The Womb, Eric, who is widely quoted as backing up Deana saying, “Yes Dear”, as well as the abbreviated vetting process.

Regen came to the forefront again most recently in November, when her large weight gain was noted, again prompting media speculation as to a forthcoming diet plan and supposed guest appearance on Oprah, which never came about. While CTO Eric provided little insight with a perplexing non-sequitur of “Yes Dear”, President Deana at the time gave a press release;

“Regen’s weight gain should not be a matter of public speculation… It shows just how far our society still needs to come that a woman must contend with such frivolous matters as her weight, rather than be judged on her long list of incredible accomplishments.”

Still, media speculation abounds, with recent estimates from leaked photos putting Regen’s weight at 7lb 4oz while still only showing a height of 20.5”. While The Daily Squealer has a policy about photos of children, recently leaked and widely distributed photos make this policy unnecessary. The photo in the sidebar will show exactly where the media interest in Regen’s weight comes from as she has been coyly described as “A chubbums”.

The Daily Squealer attempted to reach Regen for further comment, however questions were only met with cute smiles, doe eyes, or vomiting respectively.

The dismissal from the Womb was effective at 6:19PM on Dec 4 2010.

Monday, May 3, 2010

My Prom Experience

I was telling someone this story the other day, it's become a bit of a legend among my family. It goes back to my senior prom and someone here on facebook, Cleo Hood.

I had promised to take my date and I, as well as another couple to the prom. The problem was that I still only had a learners permit. I figured it would be no big deal to get it upgraded to a license by the time prom rolled around. A week before the prom, I failed my driver's test. In Arizona at the time, you had to wait a week before you could take the test a second time. This meant that I would have to actually take the test the day OF prom in order to live up to my promises.

So the day of the prom, my mom gets up with me at the butt crack of dawn so we can go to the only DMV that's open on Saturday. We had to go early being as they assume they can only do a certain number of tests on Saturday and won't take any more after that. So we get to the DMV while it's still dark out, before 5 AM, wait around for hours and manage to be third in line to get tested.

Now the first time I got tested, the passenger was very calm the entire time, relaxed, but at the end handed me a test sheet where I got knocked down for ALL kinds of petty crap. Failed with 38 points, and more than 30 being a failing grade. The second time I took the test, the day of the prom, the tester was SCREAMING at me cursing, frothing, R Lee Ermy Marine drill sergeant style. The second time I walked away with only 2 points marked down out of 30. Go figure that...

So we head home, and on the way home from the DMV, we're on Camelback road in Phoenix, which is very busy. A guy in a purple corvette dashes across three lanes to make a right turn in front of me. There's traffic on my left so I can't ditch into another lane, instead I have to jam on my brakes. The guy behind me does the same. The girl behind him locks off her brakes skids into the guy behind me who careens into the back of me. Less than two hours with my license and I just got into my first accident. Even wilder, the guy who was behind me was a friend from my high-school who had graduated the year before me.

This doesn't help my mom who is already nervous; A brand new driver, out on the road, she's a wreck, but bless her she doesn't say a word and lets me go out. I pick up my friend on my end of town, and we start driving to the south end of Phoenix to pick up our dates. We grab his date first, then start following the directions I have to Cleo's place.

Now the problem here, is that no one ever gave me an address, I had never been to Cleo's house, and any time I asked, multiple people started giving me directions (all at the same time) like "It's just a could blocks south of the high school here, it's a bright green house you can't miss it." Needless to say, you can miss it... and I couldn't find it.

Worse yet, Cleo didn't have a phone, her family couldn't afford it. Once I was an hour late picking her up, we start getting desperate and calling friends. None have good directions. Then we start calling friends of friends. One of them finally knows someone else that's only an acquaintance that knows where Cleo lives, but this acquaintance doesn't have a phone either! The FOAF has an address for the acquaintance though. We drive half way across town and get lucky! The friend of a friend of a friend is there and gives us perfect directions to Cleo's house.

We finally get on the road with a good set of directions and make it to Cleo's house.... three.. and a half.... hours late. We pull up and there's a guy sitting in the front yard. I step out and he looks like he's about ready to snap somebody in two, I'm 5'5" and 150# this guy looks about 6'7" and 280. I'm shaking as I ask if Cleo's there. He suddenly looks chipper and goes running in, Cleo comes out, her mascara running, face still wet. She had been SOBBING thinking I had stood her up.

She perked up well, and the rest of the night went fairly easy. We had a WONDERFUL time including picking up another couple, all six of us hanging out together that night. I got home safe and sound around 4 AM after dropping everyone else off, my mother finally getting some sleep as this had ALL been in one day and I had been over 24 hours without sleep... driving a bunch of teenagers... after having JUST gotten my license.

And me? I have a pretty cool story to tell people about my prom. So to Cleo, thanks for the story, my wife even thinks it's awesome :)