Category Archives: Family life

We’re having a baby!

Great news! Jaime is about 15 weeks pregnant.
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She started out with some pretty bad morning sickness. That was the worst part, but it has gotten better.

We’ve had a few appointments and a couple of ultrasounds so far. Everything looks great. We still have about a month until they can tell us the sex.

The due date is October 15. We can’t wait!

Anyone know how to sew?

About mid-morning my daughter’s preschool teacher called me. “Sorry to bother you at work, but Bailey fell off a stool and bumped her head. She is OK, but I think it will need a stitch or two.” She had fallen off a stool and hit her head on the door stop on the door frame. Ouch.

Thankfully, the teacher’s demeanor set me at ease, so I wasn’t too worried but you never want to hear about your kid bleeding.

When I got there, Bailey was in the school office with the administrator, her teacher, and the nurse. The administrator was holding her as Bailey was holding some gauze to her head and a few drops of blood were on her shirt. I tried to act nonchalant as I moved the gauze to see the wound. I think I pulled it off pretty well.

I said, “Yeah, you got a little cut there.” Inside, I’m thinking, ‘MY LORD. LOOK AT THE SIZE OF THE KNOT ON HER HEAD. I’VE NEVER SEEN SO MUCH BLOOD! MY CHILD IS GOING TO BE SCARRED FOR LIFE. Oh no, I hope I don’t throw up.’

What came out was “Yeah, let’s go to the doctor and get you fixed up.”

Honeybun met us and we went to the urgent care clinic. We only had to wait a few minutes to get into the exam room. The nurse cleaned the wound. It was only about 1/4 inch long, but it went deep and was laid open pretty wide for such a short cut.

The doctor was a woman from Nigeria. She had a great bedside manner. Honeybun was worried about scarring of course. The doctor explained her young son had a similar cut and they used Dermabond (essentially a glue) to put it together. They like to use that because it is quick to do. The problem with it is that it tends to make a bigger scar.

Then the doctor said, “But she’s a girl, so I won’t use that. We’ll do it the right way.” Stitches it was. It takes longer to do and so is a little more painful, but done right, the scar shouldn’t be noticeable in the long run.

The worst part was the Lidocaine. The doctor asked me to hold her head, but even though she was crying, she didn’t jerk her head. The kid is tough. Near the end of the stitching, she cried again complaining that it hurt, but she didn’t move her head. Even the doctor was impressed.

So, we got stitches. A right of passage of sorts. Even better timing. School pictures are in two days.

Bailey stitches

From the mouths of babes

One night last week, Honeybun was watching a TV show about 9/11 while I got Bailey ready for bed. When Bailey went in to give her mommy a hug and kiss goodnight, Honeybun paused the show. We try to be careful about what we let Bailey see. This show was more than we want her to see right now, but it just so happened that she paused the show as there was a picture of the remains of FDNY Ladder 3 on screen. The firetruck had been crushed when the World Trade Center towers fell. All 12 firefighters who rode the truck that morning were in the North Tower and died when it collapsed.
Remains of Ladder 3
Bailey noticed the picture on the screen and asked why the firetruck was broken. Not really a conversation you want to get into at bed time, but these situations never occur when you are ready for the discussion, but talking about a damaged firetruck doesn’t seem like the stuff of nightmares. So, I explained that some bad men made a building fall down on the truck.
“Did people die?”
Great. I didn’t really want to go there, but I’m not going to lie about it either. Best to just say the truth and not go into detail.
“Yes, people did die that day.”

“Did a lot of people die?”

(Sigh) “Yes, a lot of people died.”

“And they broke the firetruck. Will it ever work again?”

“No. It will never work again.” At least we got off the idea of so many deaths.

After that, we said our good night prayers and said a special prayer for the people who died that day.

She didn’t really seem to be bothered about the conversation and didn’t bring it up again the following week. But that wasn’t the end of deep topics.

This past Sunday, I took Bailey to church. I decided to take my copy of Magnificat. She saw it and was mesmerized by the cover. This month’s cover is Marco d’Oggiono’s The Archangels Triumphing Over Lucifer.
The Archangels Triumphing Over Lucifer
She began by questioning about who the angels are. That led to the more menacing figure.
“Who is the man being put in the ground?”
“That is not a man. That is the Devil.”
“Why are they putting him in the ground?”
“He is bad.”
“Does he want to hurt and kill people? Is that is why they are putting him in the ground?”
“Yes. God told the angels to put him in the ground so that he can’t hurt anyone.”
After a bit more questioning, she was satisfied. (And yes, I realized the picture depicts an event that is generally considered to be a prophecy, but that whole conversation is a lot more than she is ready for at 4 1/2 years old).

That night I was putting her to bed and she brought it up again after her prayers.
“Daddy, why is the Devil bad?”
“He was an angel and he wanted take God’s place. But no one can take God’s place. Wanting to do that is disobeying God.”
“Is that why he is bad and wants to kill people?”
“Yes.”
She was silent for about a minute.

“Daddy, Daddy! It was the devil who knocked down those buildings and killed all those people and broke the firetruck.”
I was stunned at that statement.
“Well actually it was some bad men who knocked down the buildings.”
“But the Devil told them to do it.”
I couldn’t find the hole in her conclusion that time. “I think you’re right.”
“We need God to protect us from the Devil.”

Right on Sunshine.

Never my “step father”

My biological father walked out on my mother and me when I was about two years old. He maintained his financial child support obligations but I never heard from him.

My mother once told me about a conversation she had with my Sunday school teacher when I was about 5. My mom mentioned the divorce and that my father was absent. The teacher responded, “Well that explains it.”

“What?”

“We made crafts last Father’s Day. Now I understand why he wouldn’t take his home.”

It must have been around the same time that I remember telling my mother that I wanted a dad and then a little brother. It seemed all my friends had dads, my uncles were there for my cousins. Even other friends from divorced families knew their dads, but I had no memories of my father.

Not long after those events, my mom met John. I was six when they got married. She must have made it clear what he was getting into. We were in the car leaving the church after the wedding talking about something. I don’t remember what we talking about, but I do remember saying, ” …John, I mean Dad.” I never called him John again.

He taught me how to ride a bike. He threw a baseball with me in the front yard. We wrestled on the living room floor. I used his last name when I went to second grade the next year, and we made it legal when he adopted me a few years later.

He gave me stability and security. He taught me integrity and showed me what it is to be a man of faith. Most of all, he told me what every scared little boy longs to hear, “I love you.”

My little brother was born a year and a half after the wedding. I had everything I ever wanted. I only recognize how blessed I was in hindsight. He took another man’s child and made me his own.

I met my biological father when I was 30. We talk occasionally. I address him by his first name. I now know my father, but I have only one Dad.

Dad, Happy Father’s Day.

Twinkle Twinkle

Bailey’s rendition of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.

 

Glory Be

I started teaching Bailey some new prayers at bed time a couple of weeks ago. She pretty much has the Glory Be down now.