Baby Grace just did this with her mom, who chose the wrong time to lean in for a kiss. -ms
She’s pooping like a gun!– -MS (though, I swear, if you held her legs like a trigger and aimed her a certain way …)
Pre-labor column in the Good Men Project →
“What to Do When the Baby Stops Moving.” Wrote this before labor started. True story. Thankfully not an issue now. -ms
[So, I’m going to try and pretend that Matt’s recent announcement doesn’t holistically overwhelm this post. But, isn’t that what the Internet’s all about? Posting content and believing that you’re not the only one thrilled by seeing it “published” somewhere? Anywho: Another big congrats to Matt and his fam!] ...
Labor 6/26 7:10 AM
Overnight the pain became too much, so my wife went on an epidural at 3 or 4 in the morning. I can’t honestly remember when, but they woke me and sent me out of the room. For some reason, this made me very insecure, and also angry that the pain meds were excluding me and that what I could do for my wife had become so little and that there were risks and they wouldn’t let me be there...
Labor 6/25 9:15 PM
So, almost 16! hours after my wife’s water broke, she is now 2 cm dilated. They gave her something at first to soften the cervix (either it didn’t work or she peed it out) and then put her on petocin to induce contractions. She had been having contractions 3-5 minutes apart sand we were sure we were in active labor, but 2 cm means early labor, so there’s a long way to...
Labor 6/25 10:35 AM
Waters broke at 4:30. My wife woke me up at 5 and my first thought when I realized what was happening was, why did I go to sleep at 2? It took us an hour and a half to get to the hospital. An hour of that was packing. When we got to labor & delivery, the doctor said we had packed more than he does for a trip to Europe. Luckily the shifts have changed since then. Now they have my wife on some...
He’s missing one of his socks, and we’re bad parents.– -my wife. she’s probably right. -bp
Am I ready?
People keep asking me am I ready. For a while, I had no idea how to respond to this. I just sort of awkwardly laughed it away with a “no one’s ever really ready, isn’t that fatherhood?” Well, I guess it isn’t, because now I’m ready. My wife has been having contractions on and off and fairly close together (10 minutes at times) for five or six days now, and her...
Uh oh– Everytime my wife says ‘uh oh,’ I think the baby’s coming. -ms
bp: umm...do you remember what we were talking about when you were using the milker?
wife: [half-asleep--trying to be fully asleep]....no.
bp: I feel like it was something...serious. Ok, not serious, but not something I would have expected to talk about during, you know, THAT.
wife: it was something mundane. [pause]. You're trying to blog about this, aren't you.
wife: just make something up.
bp: fine [secretly plotting a new meta blog post based on this failed attempt at recollecting just what was happening during the first conversation where milk was being extracted from my wife's body via what looks like two air-horns connected by a windshield squeegee. I mean, c'mon! She was acting as if there WASN'T milk dripping into plastic bottles as if she was a maple tree being tapped for sap.]
Fashion versus Pregnant Woman
Wife: What should I wear in labor?
Wife: That will be the first time Eun Chong sees me.
Wife: I want her to think her mom is pretty!
1st Father's Day
It’s my birthday tomorrow (I was actually born on father’s day), and today is my first official Father’s Day as an honoree, not just an honorer(?). So, why, during this confluence of things that are supposed to be me-me-me, do I keep forgetting both of these holidays? Is this the start of all the American Father cliches? Not ever making a fuss about...
How to Tell You're in Labor
According to the mother-in-law, when you look up and can’t see the ceiling. -ms
is open! Weird stuff is coming out! -ms
A Future Hearing
We just returned from the birth center. Alfie is just over 2 weeks old, and he was scheduled to come back and retake a hearing test that he failed twice already. They tell you, like they do with everything, not to worry and that it’s completely normal. That is, until it’s not. Let me just say before I go on: he passed. All is well. However, the exercise of waiting...
Wife is claiming the Bruins win for our little one-to-be. She is also responsible for the UConn win. Just so you know. -ms
MS: Did you just throw up in your nose?
MS: Yeah, gross.
MS: [hysterical laughter]
Wife: You think it's funny?
Per my last post about being a Cannibal for Cute (and Jonathan Swift, incidentally), watch this clip from Adult Swim’s Sealab 2021 on fatherhood. The Sparks-White Debbie dialogue (starting at :46) is of particular relevancy. -bp
I want to lap you up like a baby popsicle.– Source: me—though I hate to admit it—unwittingly falling into the cliche that when we, as humans, want to make a comment on how overwhelmed we feel by the cuteness of our young, we result to images of food/digestion. It’s like the cuteness goes so deep to our core, our Essence gets...
BBQ versus Pregnant Woman
Nothing can stop a pregnant woman! Nom nom nom. Except rare meat. -ms
Ultrasound, week 36
Another week, another ultrasound. This time, though, we’re rushed downstairs after our doctor’s appointment, put on the first available opening. The baby hasn’t been moving much lately. When we mentioned this to our doctor, she pretended to be calm, then ordered a (non)stress test once a week until birth. She said “yeah” a lot. And now we find ourselves downstairs,...
New Mom vs. Time
me: do you want the oatmeal cookie or the rest of that mint brownie?
wife: the cookie. It's more "morning time."
me: it's almost 3pm, you know.
wife: is it? Well, still give me the cookie.
Our Wives: Live @ 10pm
Bryan: My wife is in bed (to clarify: not sleeping, but feeding an eternally hungry week-old son). I’m down the street smoking a cigar and drinking whiskey. Clearly, I have a few things to work on. Matt: My wife is playing Tetris of course. I can hear it from the other room. Every time she gets a tetris, it says “Tetris” in a vaguely Russian electronic voice. I can hear how...
Fatherhood Frontlines: It’s not that babies are helpless. It’s that they have a way of spreading that helplessness to everyone in the household, leaving us visibly shaky. -bp
Um. My son just peed on your table.– me, to pediatric nurse, during Alfie’s first doctor visit—which, to be fair, only lasted about 3 minutes. i guess that means he was urinating for 1/9 of the visit. -bp
Tetris versus Husband
I’ve lost my wife to Tetris. She’s always off setting records or something. She’s been getting Braxton-Hicks contractions and she says playing distracts her from the pain. I feel like I’m losing a Cold War. Tetris does have some advantages over me, I admit: cool Russian music, you can twist its pieces until they fit, it keeps score but you always win, it never talks back....
"Full Term" →
(link above) Our doctor still has us getting ultrasounds, because of the steroids. This week, we have our favorite ultrasound operator. I sit by the monitor and watch the baby’s belly—we’ve had enough ultrasounds now to identify the belly, the back, the head, the placenta. I can see the heart fluttering like a wing. Usually, an ultrasound is a quick measurement, a reassurance. This...
The First of Many
I sounded whinier than my newborn son in yesterday’s post. However, rather than apologize for it, I just wanted to call it out as the first of many identity-shifts that come along with fatherhood. In just five days, the spectrum of emotion I’ve experienced is staggering. Some of it would inspire you, most of it would get me arrested. So, let’s go ahead and mint a new mini-feature...
Fatherhood Frontlines: There are apparently two stages of newborns: asleep or pissed off. -bp
All That Matters: It Starts
Where to Start?: a trip to the OB-GYN that, following an inconclusive test, turned into a trip to the hospital that, following an inconclusive test, turned the whole world into a waiting room that, following one nurse's final assessment, turned into moving across the hall to a room they call a "labor/delivery suite" that, following a series of horrifying contractions and almost 48 hours without sleep, turned into Alfred James Parys, born June 1, 2011, 4:13pm.
Where to Start?: My father, Alfred Frances Parys, passing away in 1987, when I am four.
Where to Start?: My father, James Ralph Foote, marrying my mother in 1989 and raising her three children with unbelievable wisdom.
Where to Start?: 10 months ago. Roughly.
Where to Start?: 28 years ago for me, 27 for her.
Where to Start?: A a pre-labor assessment machine called a Non-Stress Test. Which, of course, is the most ridiculous misnomer of all time.
Where to Start?: A playlist for labor that included Sigur Ros that, when played while my son's headed started to crown, reduced me to a blubbering ball of actualized fatherhood. (More on the playlist later)
Where to Start?: It's all a series of reluctant, contracting deliveries. Alfie through the birth canal. Me into fatherhood. Us out of the sliding glass doors, outdoor air hitting our son for the first time ever. Into our car as a family. Out of our car as a family. Into the apartment, where it sets in that what we are carrying in will now always be with us, no matter what happens.
Where to Start?: All that matters is that it has.
Nurse Practictioner versus Pregnant Woman
My wife has been having these sharp pains beneath the right side of her ribcage. During our appointment the other day, the nurse practitioner thought it could be gall stones. We scheduled an ultrasound, but this meant my wife couldn’t eat or drink after midnight. In the morning, she was dizzy with thirst. I tried to see how this ultrasound was a good idea. Even if she has gall stones,...
Thoughts During First Night of Sleep Training
neuroticdad: I am a terrible father. I am a terrible father. I am a terrible father. I am a terrible father. I am a terrible father. I am a terrible father. I am a terrible father. I am a terrible father.
Ultrasound: Week 35
My wife and I have had 9 (?) ultrasounds so far. Maybe I shouldn’t include myself. All I do is watch for a glimpse of our daughter’s face. The doctor is concerned that the steroids (for the PUPPP) could inhibit the baby’s growth. The first few ultrasounds, in the ER, were also about growth—my wife was throwing up every five minutes, so the doctors worried there...