Reality Comes A-Knockin’, or “Freak Out Time”
All the pregnancy books and birthing classes say that at seven months, the whole having a baby thing becomes more real to dads. Bingo.
So I’m sitting in the fully-furnished nursery today (complete with a crib, changing table, dresser, book shelf, and cradle) playing with the brand new car seat (for 5-65 pounds) when I suddenly have the thought, “Holy crap, a real live tiny little person is just a couple of months away from invading my home. We’re having a baby for real!” It’s been cool to imagine having a baby and register for gifts and all, but we’ve got a real baby coming… dang! I’m so not qualified for this position. I’m still working on figuring out how to take care of myself, much less a baby.
Of course, the woman realizes the baby is real long before the man. We feel the occassional “kick” which could alway just be gas or an implanted alien. They feel the bundle of joy doing jumping jacks on their bladder. Meanwhile, dad-to-be is able to pretend that his wife has just been hitting Mickey D’s too much and has grown a really huge beer belly. Sooner or later, though -BAM!- it hits you… you’re about to be completely responsible for another human life. Despite this, God put a baby in my wife and in just seven weeks he’ll be here.
I’m still learning how to play “Mary Had a Little Lamb” on our new musical octopus!
Video Debut, or “The very first embarrassing naked pictures go online!”
I’m back with some real content, not just goofy videos. I know it’s been a while since my last pre-fatherhood post, but other than a lot of nausea, not a lot happens during the first few months of pregnancy. I could have written endless posts about vomitting, but that just wouldn’t be much fun for anybody.
For a non-medically-up-to-date guy like me, new medical equipment seems like something out of Star Trek. Alanna went in for her halfway point ultrasound yesterday morning and we were able to leave with a DVD of the experience. There’s even some 3D pictures and heartbeat sounds! Thanks to a little computer trickiness, I’ve ripped the video and put it online for the world to see. Can a child be embarrassed by their parents prenatally? If so, it’s good practice for later on in life because this baby’s dad is pretty weird.
Oh, one important little detail was revealed during this appointment… We’ve got a boy on the way! Pretty exciting! Of course, the first thing mom-to-be wanted do was go shopping for some new blue accessories. We decided to skip all the little outfits with sports equipment on them because if he inherits his parents’ athletic ability, giving him a shirt with a football on it is just setting the poor little guy up for disappointment.
Here he is in all his tiny glory! You might notice that he never stays still for even a few seconds. Well, his mom had just finished a healthy breakfast of Corn Pops and chocolate milk, so baby’s on a sugar high. He does kick a lot though, even without stimulants. I think he’s going to be a ninja.
First Pictures, or, “I think that’s the baby… maybe”
Alanna and I were introduced to our baby for the first time today. He/she/it is not very active at the moment, but does have a good strong heartbeat (which we actually got to hear). I guess it’s hard to do a whole lot when you’re only the size of a coffee bean… once it gets bigger than that though, I’m going to have to put it to work.
We brought home some pictures to share. I think the baby looks like me.
My Baby Momma, or, “Pardon me while I vomit on your shoes.”
To prepare myself for the next nine months, I’ve been doing a little reading about pregnancy and what to expect when we’re expecting by reading the aptly titled What to Expect When You’re Expecting. Along with that great resource, I’ve also been pouring over the equally informative Babies and Other Hazards of Sex: How to Make a Tiny Person in Only 9 Months, with Tools You Probably Have around the Home by Dave Barry. Based on my reading of these two books as well as my week of first-hand experience I now feel qualified to use my blog as a tool teach others about the joys and trials of growing a baby. (Hint: It doesn’t involve a cabbage patch at all.)
The nine months of pregnancy is divided up into three units called “trimesters,” which is Latin for “three mesters.” The first trimester, the place where Alanna is right now, is a lot of fun. And when I say “fun,” I mean, “not fun.” During this phase of Operation Baby, the woman’s body basically goes crazy for a while. You’ve got hormones that have no business being in a human body in the first place suddenly taking over. When these hormones kick in, they usually bring with them a whole bunch of fatigue, soreness, nausea, vomiting, mood swings, and the desire to mix pickles and ice cream.
I can joke about these things because as a guy, I’m not the one going through them. For my wife, however, this is no laughing matter. In fact, she’s probably going to hit me when she reads this. The reason for this is that during this stage of pregnancy, the baby gets its nourishment by consuming the mother’s sense of humor. For instance, I really enjoy making comments to Alanna that I am now her “Baby Daddy,” but usually she just rolls her eyes while I’m laughing at my own joke. Thankfully, after the first trimester, everything should stabilize and she will once again be able to appreciate my wittiness (assuming she ever appreciated it in the first place… I think she actually married me despite my sense of humor.)
Based on my research, it’s important to note that at this stage, our baby has a tail. It will shrink and go away over the next month, but at this moment, we have a little tadpole. Plus, it looks like there is an alien growing inside of my wife. Watch the skies… and the womb!
So anyway, in case you’re wondering (or wandering), Alanna is cool with me making smart alec comments about her pregnancy and discussing her nausea in front of the whole world via the internet. She will undoubtedly hit me, but she would probably do that anyway. (Remember, mood swings are part of the joys of pregnancy!) Stay tuned for more educational moments, most of which is at least somewhat true.
Revelation, or, “This thing I’m holding has been peed on!”
Last Wednesday, my wife Alanna surprised me by walking into my office with a bouquet of flowers for my desk. As a guy, I’m not used to getting flowers, but I thought that maybe she was just in a particularly sweet mood and wanted to spruce up the little cave where I spend most of my week. Then she told me to close my eyes and hold out my hands. I obeyed, hoping for candy or maybe pizza.
When I opened my eyes again, however, there was a pregnancy test in my hands… and there was a plus sign in the little window. Being a guy and knowing nothing about how these things work, I looked up at Alanna and asked if this meant what I thought it did. She beamed at me. There was my answer. Wow, my head was spinning and a stupid-looking grin spread across my face. Holy crap, I’m going to be a daddy!
And I need to wash my hands…. ew.