Dateline: May 8, 1992. Anaheim, California. 9:30-10:00 am.
My wife had been in labor since midnight. She woke me around six and said it was time to head to the hospital. I got dressed, told our nanny what was happening and it was go time.
We arrived at Kaiser Permanente Hospital at 6:30. We checked in, were assigned a birthing room and had a quick check from the doctor. Nine centimeters dilated, it was going to be go time as soon as the water broke.
Hmmm…the scene was eerily similar to one almost two years earlier. In September 1990, daughter number one was born to circumstances that mirrored this one. The times of labor, departure and arrival, and dilation were exactly alike. Play that Twilight Zone music.
Daughter number one was born around seven. We were at the hospital less than half an hour before she arrived. I didn’t get much of a birthing experience. All those lamaze classes were a waste! And now it looked like this new child was going to do the same thing.
However, this child had a mind of her own! She waited…and waited…and waited. It took almost three hours for the water to break. She was born around ten am.
Okay, no big deal. It’s not like we had to be anywhere anyway. But, now it’s bonding time. For the first child, I cut the umbilical cord, held her and put my finger in her hand. She grabbed on tight! That was one of the best experiences of my life. I was ready to do this with child number two.
I cut the cord-check!
They put the baby in my arms-check!
I put my finger in her hand-BUZZ!!!!
Nothing! Nada! ZIP!!!
Oh man…this kid has a mind of her own. She wants you to earn her love and respect! Well, I guess this one won’t be as easy! Look out folks, childhood is going to be a roller coaster ride!
And with that, my youngest daughter became in charge of our household….at least in her mind. There were times I looked at her and could imagine her thinking ‘What’s wrong with you people?”…and a lot of the time she was right.
My favorite story about her childhood is when she was toilet trained. She had been intently watching her sister go through the training process and it was apparent that she was close to ready. The issue, or at least my issue, was she was only about eighteen months old. Everything I read about this said it was way too early and doing it so soon would lead to a disaster. I said let’s wait until she turns two and we’ll start then. The book says she’ll be ready then.
Pffffft…the book! What did they know?!
Her birthday comes and it’s time to use the potty.We had everything ready for her. The baby potty! The pull-ups! Let’s get started!
She needs to use the bathroom, so we walk her to the baby potty. She jumps off and sits on the normal toilet. She does her business, grabs some toilet paper and voila! Okay, this is way too easy!
We put on a pull-up and that’s it for toilet training until the next time. She then walks into her bedroom, takes off the pull-up, opens her sister’s drawer, grabs a pair of panties, puts them on and heads to the living room to join her family.
I’ve never seen or heard anything like that before or since. She should have written that damn book!
That cemented her position as the brain of the family….at least until the night she fell off a couch and broke her arm. Yeah, I know that can happen to anyone, but not usually after you’re told to get down and then you immediately climb higher, only to land on a cement floor. I guess a broken arm and a little surgery can knock you down from your throne a bit. Hey kid…five years at the top was a good run!!
About seven years ago, my youngest told me she had met a guy and it was looking serious. I had never heard anything like that from her before, so I figured it really was. I asked how long they had been seeing each other and she said two weeks. I think I had an internal laugh and I probably rolled my eyes because I do that a lot. It turned out she was right….again…because five years ago, my baby got married to that guy!
As time passes by, people get on with their lives and don’t spend as much time together as they would like. It even happens to fathers and daughters who love each other. So, the two of us made a deal where we would have lunch with each other once a month. It’s worked fairly well most of the time, but occasionally something happens and we miss a meal. The start of this year was one of those occasional times. Our schedules didn’t quite mesh and then came March….and the pandemic.
One day I get a call, which is unusual because our communication is mostly by text. When I saw her name on my phone, I figured something big was up.
“Dad, we’re expecting a baby!”
Oh my God…my baby is having a baby!!!
I don’t know why I was surprised. I knew it was going to happen eventually. Honestly, I was more surprised it hadn’t happened earlier in their marriage. But let me say this once again…
Oh my God….my baby is having a baby!!!
The months went on…April-check, May, her birthday month-check…btw, I saw her on her birthday and was shocked she didn’t look even a bit pregnant, June, July, August-check, check, check! Here comes September!!
Her due date is the seventeenth. As it got closer, I told her I was going to be bugging her more often. Nothing major just an every so often wellness check because, after all, she’s still my baby! On the thirteenth, I sent her a text asking how it was going. I assumed the response would be fine, nothing major, just another day closer. It turned out to be one of those ‘you know what happens when you assume’ moments because a few hours later I get a text from her hubby telling me she had been in labor since midnight. Hmmmm….like her mother, like daughter!
We can fast forward this to 9:30 pm. After twenty-one or so hours of labor, my baby had a baby of her own.
Oh my God….my baby had a baby!!!
After a day in the hospital, mom, dad and son are home and are adjusting. Actually, it’s mom and dad who are doing the adjusting. The baby is acting like all ten day old baby act!
So, you may be wondering, how is the new grandfather doing with all of this? Hmmm….well, he met his grandson on day four of his life and when he put his finger into his little hand-BUZZ!!
Nothing! Nada! Zip!
Oh man, it’s going to be like this again! I guess I should have expected this this. Like mother, like son!
But to my darling daughter and my new grandson, here’s some advice:
a. Take it easy with the toilet training. Don’t expect it to happen in ONE DAY!
b. Hey kid, when your mom tells you to get down from the top of the couch, don’t climb higher!!
My love to everyone. Try to get some sleep in the next few years…good luck on that!
Related Post: I can’t believe I have a thirty year old child
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