Stories from the front lines of an unplanned pregnancy.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

An open letter to my son, The Fetal Ninja I.R.A...

Dearest baby,

Hey there, mother here. You know, your mother? Oh, right, you haven't any concept of what a mother is just yet, have you? Well let's see if i can't put this into terms you'll understand. You know that toasty warm wading pool of amniotic goodness you've been kicking it in for the past 34 weeks? Right, well that would be my womb. You may also know me by the sound of my voice. The one singing bad 90's pop medleys and occasionally yelling obscenities at the TV screen. Oh, and the one way trip you'll be taking into the great big world in 42 days? You'll be traveling courtesy of my vag canal. You, parasite. Me, host. Does that clear things up? Fabulous.

Well, bambino, the reason I'm writing to you is because it would seem that we're in the home stretch here-- stretch marks and stretched patience factor in pretty heavy these days-- and so I think now is a good time to lay out a couple of ground rules for once you actually get here. Now, up until this point, I realize that we haven't exactly been on the same page in regards to the whole "parental authority" thing, but be forewarned... once you're on the outside, no one's going to smile and coo when you decide to pummel the shit out of me. Out here, mommy abuse does not equal cute. It equals a psychological evaluation and a bottle of Ritalin. Out here, you're in my house. We play by my rules. And number one is Thou shalt listen to thy Mama.

First off, I'm gonna need for you to figure out the way this whole day/night thing works. Daytime is for playing. Nighttime, sleeping. It's a pretty simple formula, really, but one that has baffled you tiny set and frustrated the hell out of your long suffering parents for centuries. Now, I know that as you'll be an breastfed baby, you'll be getting up a few times a night wailing your head off to get back on the boob. And that's okay, your father does the same thing. Ditto for diaper changes. I know you're going to need them, lots of them, and they won't be pretty and they won't stop at midnight and resume at a more sensible hour. But again, I'm prepared for that, so no worries. What will not fly, however, is you deciding to develop colic. At three weeks old, your life is fucking beautiful, okay? You sleep when and wherever you want, you've got these two people obsessing over you night and day like you're the second coming of Christ, you're never wanting for cute hats with ears on them, you don't even have to wipe your own ass, and you know that not three hours will go by without someone waving a boob in front of your face. Do you know how many men would kill to be in your shoes tiny socks for that reason alone? So screaming to the heavens four hours on end like a pocket sized banchee is just not cool. Yes, your crib may not be as cozy as the womb you've been wallowing in for the first nine months of your existence, but mommy didn't spend $300 on stupid, overpriced, trendy Dwell bedding so that you could have a conniption fit ever time you're laid on it. And yes, I know it will suck to be somewhere new and not have anyone understand a word you're saying. But hell, you'll have had nine months to pick up the language and you're gonna get out here and bawl your eyes out because I don't understand you? You've gotta be kidding me. So do us all a huge favor and get the whole idea of colic out of your head. You have nothing to be that pissed off about. Well, except for circumcision. That's definitely gonna suck. Sorry. But once that heals, I don't want to have to deal with that kind of senseless misery and self pity again until you're 13 and locked in your room in your girl jeans and studded belt listening to GlassJaw. Got it?

Finally, I know it's going to be a crazy first few months getting to know each other and all doing all the million firsts that are in store ("What is this delicious snack you call a 'thumb'?!"), but I want you to understand now, before we're even formally introduced, that I love you. I've loved you since I saw your little alien head bobbing around on the sonogram and I'll love you until I kick the bucket (Or, you decide to become a republican. Kidding!). So when those firsts include "The First Time Mommy Forgets Me in the Carseat", "Baby's First Trip to the ER Because Mommy Seriously Believes I Sneezed and Therefore Must Have the Avian Flu" and yes, even "My First Weekend Alone With Daddy"-- when you will undoubtedly be dressed in mismatched clothes and drinking chocolate breastmilk from a miniature beer hat-- please understand that we were trying our best. Just like you'll be mystified by your own reflection for at least a good six months, we're going to be mystified by the BabyBjorn and every new freckle and scratch on your little body. But I promise we'll get it together soon enough. And I guarantee you that while we may never really become June and Ward Cleaver, we will do everything in our power to make sure you're the happiest, most well adjusted, and well loved little critter around.

With Love Love Love and an Iron Fist,

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