Fathers, you’re pretty darned amazing. As soon as you find out your wife is bringing new life into the world, you get thrown off your plan. It’s a nailbiter to realize you are responsible …
Fathers, you’re pretty darned amazing. As soon as you find out your wife is bringing new life into the world, you get thrown off your plan. It’s a nailbiter to realize you are responsible for a family and will be the catalyst for their confidence and success as the guide and safety net.
Fret not, it’s all going to come to fruition and you will be a far better person than your mother-in-law ever dreamed.
Our oldest son, Tug, is a petroleum engineer with his master’s and a thinker, doer and goal setter. I’m pretty sure the oilfield manuals in his office are alphabetized, though he denies it. I’ve always said he was born older and more mature than me and this, he does not deny.
Twelve years ago, he and Stephanie were married, and four months into it, found out baby number one, our eldest grandchild, Garrett, was on the way. Tug was stunned. It wasn’t written in his planner, so how could it be?
He regained his footing and thought one was a good number, but four years later, Dane entered the picture. Tug was tickled and all was spiffy with a perfectly well-rounded family of four. He loudly, with capital letters and many exclamation points, said two kids were absolutely it and there was no discussion or exception.
Tug, a great dad, is an avid supporter of his boys’ accomplishments in soccer, baseball, basketball and lacrosse and coaches both their football teams. One season, when Garrett was in third grade and Dane was 5, the older team didn’t have enough players so Dane was recruited. Dane had played football the year before and had just completed spring soccer season when he was hit up to join the big boys’ team. In the first game, Dane got the ball on a running play and his short legs pumped to a touchdown. If that wasn’t spectacular enough, on the next play, the quarterback threw him the ball, he caught it, and running it in, made the extra point. To this day, Garrett and his buddies call Dane, “Tiny Legend.”
Tug was content with his two boys.
On my birthday last September, Garrett and Dane, now 11 and 7, FaceTimed saying they had a present for me and, much to my surprise, held up a sonogram photo of a new addition. Not much shocks me, but that was a bombshell because Tug was so adamant that there would be no more babies. He assured me nobody was more caught off guard than he.
We gave them a few weeks to get used to the news then Gar and I went to visit them. I told Tug that his dad and I had smirked once in a while over the years that it would be the cat’s pajamas for a baby girl to arrive to his gang. He asked why we’d never mentioned it. I laughed, “Because I’m your mother and I know things, and I know you’d have scowled.” He nodded.
I said, “I don’t know if this is a little girl because I’m no psychic, psycho, yes, psychic, no, but I’m hoping.” He considered agreeing about the psycho part but stayed quiet since he knows things too; like that he’s witnessed his mother when she really is psycho.
Fast forward to March 12, Stephanie had a planned C-section and with the drape up, the doctor pulled the baby from her womb. Staring, Tug couldn’t believe what he was seeing. The nurse said, “You tell Stephanie what she’s got, Tug.”
He squinted, and shaking his head said, “I’m not sure I can, I’ve never seen anything like that.” About that time, Quinn Kathryn Eva Eiden let out a blood-curdling, high-pitched squeal and her mother, not even being able to see her, said, “That’s definitely a girl’s squall.”
Once, a friend confided to our second son, Tanner, that after several boys, they were having a girl, and he was uneasy about it. Tanner questioned, “When’s the last time you called your mother?” The friend hesitated and Tanner said, “Exactly. My sister calls our parents every day. There’ll come a time you’ll be glad you’ve got that girl.”
Last weekend we visited them and I asked Tug, “Will you have another baby so Quinn has a playmate?”
His eyes widened and he grimaced, then leaning in close he said, “I’m having a vasectomy if I have to do it with a pocketknife and a YouTube video.”