In 3 days, I will be a father. Again. The next little guy is scheduled for a c-section at 7:30am on Monday morning.
Lots of people have been asking me how I feel about this. It’s been hard to give an honest answer. Until about 24 hours ago, the honest and true answer was
that I was simply excited to get my bedridden wife back. I wanted someone else in the house who can clean the cat litter. Someone else who can carry the laundry baskets up and down the stairs. Empty the dishwasher, go to the grocery store, clean up the toys.
More than anything else, I really wanted to have sex again.
You get the idea. It was all about me, and what I wanted. But now that the full reality of this thing is hitting me, I find myself looking forward to different things. The sweet little face of the baby. The grabbing onto my fingers. The wrapping him up snugly in a baby blanket. Introducing him to his older brothers, and seeing their reactions and interactions.
My maternal instincts are kicking in. It is amazing how long it took. I am a man and I am selfish. Sometimes these facts work together, against me, and make it hard for me to see beyond my own field of vision.
But now I can honestly say that I am really excited about it. Every time my cell phone rings at work, I assume it’s her calling to tell me that her water broke. I kind of hope it is her.
We still don’t have a name. It’s starting to get awkward. There were 2 candidates that I was happy with, and then this morning my wife introduced a third. 3 days out and we have 3 potential names. We like the long versions of them, but we’re not so into the nicknames that could result. I’m tempted to write about them here, and ask for opinions from the peanut gallery, but ultimately this is a decision we need to make for ourselves. And I’d prefer not knowing who hates the names we chose.
Are names important? On the one hand, no. The kid is going to be born, grow up, and die, just like everyone else. What could be less important than the name we call him during that short timespan? In the grand scheme of Earth, it’s irrelevant.
But on the other hand, there is nothing more important. Naming something gives it meaning, an identity in the world, a way that people will think of it. LIke naming a mountain range or a street or a website. Language has evolved over thousands of generations and it’s important precisely because we say it’s important. We give it meaning every day. Words are important.
When I named this blog, I never imagined it would turn into this. Some days I wish I could go back and name it something else, something less embarrassing. But it’s strangely fitting. Did I grow into the name or does it actually fit perfectly with the tongue-in-cheek voice I often use? I don’t know.
Anyway, naming a kid is important. And unlike the other two rugrats, we’re at a loss. Nothing has grabbed us by the guts and said THIS IS THE NAME.
Any advice? Suggestions welcome.