Your mother’s restlessness is gone. The hysterical tears and frightening giggles have passed. She’s ready to be reasonable now. Let me explain.
We woke up on this Saturday with nervous energy. Thrilled. Terrified. And everything in between. A bit of every emotion, you know? I’m sure during our march of sentiment, you were cooler than the other side of the pillow.
I had a hunger, no, a rage for normalcy because I felt like something was going to happen. I tried to read like I normally do in the morning, but the words went unabsorbed. The thought of exercise was logically sound, but also laughable. The place where I write, this room with plain walls and one window that is usually a place where time passes quickly, suddenly had a meaningless vitality where the seconds felt like hours. Then, the absurdness kicked in. Maybe I’ll dig up the yard? Call a junk truck to rid of the closet full of chotchkies that drive me up the wall? I wanted to do everything. The non-directional buoyancy that came upon me was like a storm that I couldn’t outrun.
It felt like big events were coming.
Your mother has made some internet friends with other women who are in the same season of life. Day and night, these women communicate with amazing endurance. Momma has made her participation in this community a part time job. And from what I understand, there is no pay. But since the other women participate for free, it’s okay. They have invented many acronyms to speak faster in their native tongue. They hurl strategies and tactics at each other like a head coach on the sideline. I approve of this circus because above all else, they provide support that I can’t quite deliver.
While I was trying to figure out what to do with my head and hands, your mother was buried into her phone swallowing all the encouragement she could from her tribe. I’m not sure if this helped or simply distracted her from the anticipation.
Then the miracle happened.
We stood in the master bathroom, one of two and a half in the whole house. It confuses me why we have more bathrooms than people in this home. Perhaps that’s why we decided to try for a family.
I don’t remember what your mother and I were talking about moments before the faintest of red lines started to seep through on the test strip.
Her eyes made contact with this fact. And then she lost it.
First, there were words.
“Oh my God! Brian, look!”
Then there was a physical reaction.
In complete shock, her body was sent into full confusion. Her hands went everywhere. Her head went from buried into her neck then up to the ceiling with great speed. She did this little kick with her feet — it reminded me of how Hank kicks up dirt after he shits in our yard. I didn’t tell her this, though.
Then there were the tears.
Her cheeks, puffed up from the large smile, were like speed bumps that prevented her tears from falling quickly from her face. Something novel was now in her eyes.
She was going to be a mother. No. She was now a mother. Your mother.
I stood there pretending like I had everything under control. But my insides told a different story. Realizing that you were going to be here in about eight months sent my mind into a frenzy. My stomach might has well have been a bowl of wet noodles. I’m excited. I’m scared. I’m deeply curious about you already. Will you like prose poetry? Perhaps you’ll enjoy your oatmeal very wet like your mother? An athlete? Maybe a scholar? A civil servant? A vagabonder?
I’ve never done this before. It feels like I’m getting ready to step into the ring with a prize fighter and I’ve had no previous training.
But I will press on and face the ocean of uncertainty because it’s woven into my heart to love you as my child. They say that the most dangerous people are those who choose to rebel without a cause — with your forthcoming you’ve given me a new purpose. I’m going to choose to love you in a way that is indefinite. Immeasurable. This is my choice because the alternative is not an option.
I’m going to be a Dad. Your Dad. I’m new in this arena of parenting, and I know for sure I’m going to make the mistake of having poor shoulder position leaving my jaw open for a right hook along our journey. I will get hit many times. But, I will get back up for you no matter how hard I take it to the chin.
This is day one and I already love you so much.