Thursday, April 7, 2011

Sneak Attack

I’m sure it rarely comes across but I do sometimes try to plan ahead as far as what I’m going to blog about, either during any given week or any specifically-themed day, at least in broad terms. I spent so much time on Tuesday talking about the Chuck E. Cheesesperience that I didn’t have the opportunity to get into the Toys R Us excursion immediately prior to the birthday party. That struck me as worth holding onto, though, for the usual Thursday offspring-oriented post, because I could at least start with describing the toy train demo which happened to be going on when we showed up, and of course completely enthralled the little guy (to the point where later that evening he was asking “Where are my Chugging-times?” because of course he assumed the Chuggington engines and track set he had been playing with at the store were now and forevermore his to keep) before moving on to my own personal toy obsessions, like have you guys heard of these Ninjago sets?


My wife and I have an eternal debate about overdesigned Lego sets versus open-ended piles of generic bricks.  I REST MY CASE.

And maybe I could ruminate extensively on how sometimes I don’t completely trust myself to put my son’s actual needs ahead of my own wants. So far I feel like I’ve been winning the war-against-myself as, for example, despite how much I really want to be able to trade Star Wars quotes with the little guy (and he’d be up for it, he is a quote-spouting machine) I have yet to sit him down to watch Episode IV with me. But I wonder how much longer I can hold out. Ditto with things like LEGO FREAKING NINJAS which really are not age-appropriate until he’s like 8 or so. (And buying the toys now but hiding them away for the next five birthdays and Christmases is a slippery slope, I fear.) Plus the added complication that even if I somehow rationalized and convinced myself that the little guy is already ahead of the things-in-mouth curve and I wouldn’t have to explain tiny plastic shuriken shapes on the x-rays of his stomach to any concerned medical professionals, there’s another baby on the way and I’m not entirely sure we should have any choking hazard toys in the house for the little guy at all until the little girl is well and truly beyond the experimental plastic-tasting phase …

But then of course as if on cue, it is the little girl herself who is dominating my offspring-oriented thoughts this afternoon. My wife had separate appointments with both her OB and the midwife yesterday and on the one hand dang near everything about the baby and her present environs are still perfect, but on the other hand there’s a slight but hazardous to ignore rise in my wife’s blood pressure becoming apparent, and given a complicated interaction of various factors like past history and present circumstances and so on, the professional advice all around seems to be that the baby needs to make her debut sooner than later.

So we agreed to that in theory yesterday and there was a follow-up appointment today and not too long ago plans became duly finalized: we will be expected at the hospital at 6:15 a.m. on Tuesday. Of course Nature may yet choose to demonstrate that she’s running the show and send my wife into labor between now and then – and that would be fine, really! We made it well into April, as of today over a week longer than my wife’s pregnancy with the little guy lasted, and a surprise trip to L&D tonight would not put us out in the slightest. But if the process has not begun by Tuesday morning then it will be helped along.

Fortunately said help will take the most minimally intrusive forms possible – last time my wife was subjected to the whole arsenal of options all at once which was a mite harrowing, but this time it can go more along the lines of trying one little thing, waiting and seeing if it works, trying another incrementally larger thing, waiting and seeing, and so on. And it’s great to know that the midwife, especially, is approaching it that way and looking out for our comfort level with the process, not just how fast and efficient the whole enterprise can be. Plus there’s been a growing impatience in both me and my wife, at different times and to different extents, to get on with it and transition from pregnancy days to baby days, and now the countdown clock is quite readable.

But, in other ways, all things of course being relative – it’s a bummer. The whole pregnancy had been so (again, relatively) uneventful and positive-trending that we really thought my wife would simply go into labor the old fashioned way, which we didn’t get to experience the first go-round and were honestly looking forward to the second. And it’s not entirely about fetishizing some ideal of natural childbirth, either. The flipside is that medical intervention in jumpstarting the delivery of the baby is a little scary and nerve-wracking under the best of conditions. Which, for the record, we are pretty much under, so as is my constant refrain, it could be a lot worse. Also for the record, I don’t think that fact makes not liking the situation any less legit.

But this too shall pass. We’ll deal with it as we need to in the now, and get through our bad feelings about it, and in the end we’ll bring our daughter home and get on with the good stuff. At some point after that and before her first birthday I may even start blogging again.

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