the kid is the devil

mowing the lawn and the kid set up an elaborate fort with tents and chairs and pillows and blankets on the porch to be outside with me. even put her protective ear protection on because the lawnmower is loud. 

i finished and went inside and she kept the door open, i did not know she was bringing everything back in so i shut the door. few minutes later and i hear “what the heck? who shut the door? i wasn’t done!” 

i say, oh i am sorry i didn’t know

she says after a few moments, it’s okay i still love you 

knowing your 3 year old is actually taking time out to ponder if closing the front door is a good enough reason to stop loving you is terrifying 

the kid is the devil

the kid: someone else’s candy

I was putting the kid into the car seat when she found her cousin’s easter bag. Knowing the general attitude that she has I braced myself for a fight with the two and a half year old monster. 
She pulled out a couple of the toys from the bag. “These are Jake’s.” I agreed with her. She put them back in the bag. A little package of candy eggs came out next. “This is Jake’s candy. Can I have some?” 
“No, that is Jake candy. ” I told her expecting to get bombarded with wails and pleading. 
“Okay.” She put the candy back in the bag and I finished strapping her in. 
I was expecting a full on toddler breakdown and was taken completely by surprise. I feel like it is an important event because toddlers are usually so self-centered and her deferring to her cousin’s ownership of the candy was great. 

the kid: someone else’s candy

the kid: snow day

Took the little one to the snow for the first time. She, at almost 3, fears nothing. Upon witnessing other people climb the hill and slide down the designated paths she demanded I get her to the top of the hill as quickly as possible so she could throw herself down the sledding track. No sled, just a fully insulated snow suit.

At one point she was so eager to make it down the mountain she ignored the trail entirely and just fell down the side narrowly missing trees and a submerged parking sign.

Absolute maniac of a child. Seriously.

the kid: snow day

the kid: spiders

A few days ago the kid came into my room and said “Daddy, get the monsters.” When I asked what monsters she said “The fires.”

For some reason when she says spiders it comes out as fires. We’re always hearing “fire, fire” and honestly I don’t know which is scarier.

At some point she decided that she couldn’t sleep until all the spiderwebs were gone. “Where’s the broom? Let me get it.” I smacked at everything she pointed at with the broom and she yelled “get ’em get’ em” at any hapless spider trying to run away. Devil child.

the kid: spiders

Movies and Parental Units

Type A: Abandon all hope. These parental units do away with movies and other social endeavors altogether. “Won’t someone think of the children?” is their primary concern.

Type B: Abandon all responsibility. These parents dump their progeny on the grandparents, aunts, uncles, siblings. They return to social endeavors as if nothing even happened. “Kid? What kid? Oh yeah, I think they’re with their granddad.”

Type C: Abandon all courtesy. These parents drag their screaming offspring to whatever movie they want to see. “Take my 3 year old to see Blade? Sure, why the hell not? “

Movies and Parental Units

Life Change

Everyone always tells you that having a kid will change your life. Current fathers will give you that serious look and say something along the lines of “there goes your social life.”

This is something I’ve prepared for, my wife and I have had a good run, almost 13 years of childless freedom. We knew there were going to be changes, less discretionary time and money, what we did not expect was summer of 2013. We are pretty avid moviegoers and when there is something even remotely interesting to us we will usually take the opportunity to get out of the house. Luckily the local cineplex has $5 Monday shows so it’s not a bank breaking habit.

I will admit that the beginning of 2013 has been pretty sparse. We have not been that interested in many of the films being put out. We did go see A Good Day To Die Hard. We are suckers for Bruce Willis and seeing Jai Courtney outside of Spartacus (read: with a shirt on) was cool. We were vaguely interested in Jack the Giant Slayer but the trailers and reviews were so tepid we decided not to catch it. I very much wanted to see Stoker but it never came within a hundred miles of our little town. Olympus Has Fallen was one of the prime candidates for us but once again the trailers and reviews kept us away. We got to see To The Wonder at home via digital on demand and that was nice, usually Terrence Malick films don’t come to theaters around here. Oblivion was a good time, a return to old form for us, aside from the fact that my wife was 8.5mos pregnant and barely made it without having to run to the restroom.

So that brings us to May 3rd, the due date for our little one. The day Iron Man 3 was released. Well, that was just the beginning. In the following weeks there are far too many movies that my wife and I would normally find our way to. Let’s see…

  1. Iron Man 3
  2. The Great Gatsby
  3. Star Trek Into Darkness
  4. Epic
  5. After Earth
  6. Now You See Me
  7. Man of Steel
  8. Monsters University
  9. World War Z
  10. White House Down
  11. The Lone Ranger
  12. Despicable Me 2
  13. Pacific Rim
  14. R.I.P.D.
  15. The Wolverine
  16. 2 Guns
  17. Elysium
  18. Kick-Ass 2
  19. The World’s End

I imagine if my kid ever grows up and reads this she will point out how self-centered I was being when I wrote it. She will probably make some reference to some fault in her personality and blame it all on this. Well, if it was me that’s what I would do.

I can look at the list of movies I will miss and feel a pang of remorse. I am human and as part of being human I endeavor to do things I enjoy. Movies are one of the things that bring me great joy and having them taken away is hard. However, I don’t mind nearly as much as I thought I would.

It is true that my little one is still just a squirmy mindless little thing and won’t remember a thing about the next few months or years but I will. I will eventually see those films through streaming or renting and that’s okay. Perhaps a year ago or even 3 months ago it wouldn’t be okay. I’d stamp my foot and throw a little temper tantrum in my head because god forbid something make me miss my movies. I am quite insufferable. But this isn’t back then. It is now. I will sneak out and see what I can but that urgency isn’t there anymore. There are more important things for me to be doing now. I was afraid I would be that insufferable bastard about things like movies and free time. It was one of the reasons I was hesitant to have children. But now that she is here I find myself finally having to be a grown up. Mind you I don’t care for it much but does anyone really? Who doesn’t look back and think about how nice it was to be without responsibility?

I joke about this list to friends. I tease my childless coworker about how much he would hate having a kid. I do what was done to me but I do it not out of spite, no, I do it with my tongue in my cheek because I know, as all father’s do (or should), that there will always be [that thing I used to do] but that my little one will only be little right now.

“Just wait until you are old enough,” I say. “There is so much I want to show you.”

Life Change

The Kid: Arrival

Day 1

Thursday, May 2nd, 2013

May 3rd, 2013 is the date all the doctors thought that my kid was going to be born. So I adjusted my work schedule and starting on April 23rd I worked ten days in a row to get May 3rd-6th off in anticipation of the arrival of my little one. Due dates are not an exact science though so all I could really hope for the best.

When I got home Thursday my wife and discussed how she was feeling. She was doing reasonably well, the pregnancy up to this point had been a breeze. After reading so many horror stories about pain and the general malaise associated with being pregnant we were both surprised at how smoothly everything went. No real morning sickness, no weird appetite cravings, no unexplained cramps. Pretty much the only thing she experienced was the discomfort of gaining 20lbs too quickly, some back pain, some weariness.

My wife and I are pretty avid movie-goers. We see just about every movie that interests us opening weekend. So of course we were aware that May 3rd was the release date of Iron Man 3. After a little talking about it we decided we would go to the 11:05pm showing that night. One last midnight showing before having our lives turned upside down by the little one.

247997_4762678306097_1397191916_nBraxton Hicks contractions had been coming and going for a couple of days but she never said they were anything too terrible. We are fairly certain the real contractions started during the movie, but they were hours apart, so we went home and went to bed.

Day 2

Friday May 3rd, 2013

Going to a late movie and getting home and being wide awake we really didn’t sleep until 3:00am and were up by about 9:30am, we both find it hard to sleep when it’s bright outside. Friday was all worry and anticipation.

I spent the majority of my time playing with Android apps for timing contractions. She spent most of her time trying to deal with the real deal. They never came with regularity, some 2hrs apart, some 3mins apart. We used heating pads and warm baths to ease her through it but neither one of us slept at all during the day or night.

Day 3

Saturday May 4th, 2013

At 3am the contractions were at about 6mins apart and nearly unbearable. We debated going to the hospital but then they stopped for 30mins or so and we delayed. We finally did arrive at the hospital at 6am and at 7am when they checked she was 7cm dilated.

I cannot emphasize how strong a woman my wife is. She made it to 7cm without a drop of pain medicine and even though I knew she was experiencing great pain she never once cried out or gave me any notion that it was worse than a bad backache. I am the polar opposite, I get a migraine and thrash about in bed wailing for someone to put me out of my misery.

Our first born little girl made her appearance at 5:50pm on Saturday May 4th. 7lbs 2ozs. 19.5 inches. In less than 30 seconds of life she screamed like a banshee and gripped my pinky so hard it turned the tip of it blue. She was strong and healthy and amazing.

The Kid: Arrival