Sunday, May 22, 2011

It must be spring

Well, I’m still skeptical that we’ve seen the last of the snow here in WI, but in TVland, at least, it must be spring. Catching up on Hulu over the past week, Annie and I have seen the mid-riot birth of Shirley’s non-Chang baby, SNL’s fetal duets, and the false and true labors of Angela on Bones. And all of them served to remind and inform me of one thing – I’m not prepared.

I’m not talking about all the new vocab – Annie taught me vernix yesterday – or the nitty-gritty delivery room business. There’ll be time for all that soon enough. But time is running dramatically short on the very detailed process of preparing a nuanced and novel pregnancy schtick.

For as long as I can remember, whenever someone says, “I think my water just broke*,” my instinctive response has been, “Don't worry, we’ll buy you a new one,” dredged up by my subconscious from the sitcom-filled part of my brain where I should have been storing facts about dinosaurs. And so I know that one of my most important contributions to this delivery will be my reaction, or over-reaction rather, to the news the labor has begun.

Of course, my options are constrained; I’m no longer fighting-trim for pratfalls, though fatman pratfalls are the sweetest of all, and I’m at the distinct disadvantage of starting so late in the game – 106.5 billionth in line, according to Wolfram Alpha. Should I fall victim to a series of increasingly improbable but harmless mishaps? Completely misunderstand the situation unfolding around me? Run around the house, guano-crazy, shouting and looking for “the suitcase?” My options all just feel so terribly hackneyed.

Now, I hear that voice in the peanut gallery suggesting, “Perhaps you can be the hyper-competent, perfectly prepared father,” to which I can only respond, “Oh, Annie, you’re pregnant, what are you doing up so late?”

At any rate, I have some really serious decisions to make in the coming months, decisions which will affect Little Scooter’s future in ways I can't possibly imagine. Maybe I should buy a special hat?

Okay, truth is, Annie and I at this point have willingly, gleefully, blessedly boarded the rudderless ship of pregnancy, and beyond the subtle adjustments of good nutrition and regular checkups, are completely at the mercy of the (to belabor a metaphor) sea on the ultimate course the journey will take. And that’s maddening. Uhm, maddeningly okay. If I twist my head around a bit and squint my eyes, it’s freeing, too, I suppose. And an opportunity for faith. But we are hope-filled and joyful and, most importantly, together, so hurry up Little Scooter and get here fast right on time!

*Admittedly, this has never happened to me, and I’m aware it doesn’t happen all that frequently to begin with.


Anonymous said...

Never underestimate the comedic value of leaving without your wife.

novelgazer said...

Mrmonadahl: ooh, that one's a classic, probably my favorite. Then he returns through the door sheepishly after a 3 count.