Today is Kid A’s NINETEENTH birthday, but I’ve been incorrectly telling people for about six months now that she was going to turn 20 this year, and who can believe where the time has gone, and I’m too young to have a kid that old, and wasn’t she just a little baby a minute ago, and …(insert Charlie Brown teacher voice). But I stand corrected, as she is not 20 yet. And I can totally believe that she is 19. Just not 20. So, we’re good.
She was born in a blizzard. Well, not actually in a blizzard, but in a hospital during a blizzard. Although, the wife of a co-worker delivered one day before and she almost did have her baby in the snow as she was being taken to the hospital on a snowmobile (I am a little bit jealous of that super cool birth story).
I was overdue by five days and I was ready to evict my tenant. When the oxytocin kicked in, I tried to rip the side rails off of my hospital bed. Sheepdog hung out with me early on during the slow part of labor, but he seemed kind of bored, so I sent him home to have lunch and a beer and to shovel the driveway. It’s what I wanted to be doing if I hadn’t been otherwise occupied. Then he almost missed her actual birth. He literally ran into the delivery room while nurses were putting his paper hospital costume on him. He rounded the corner and burst into the room and BAM! he got a full frontal view of leg spread with a side of crowning baby head and extra sauce. Welcome to fatherhood, pal. That’s probably gonna leave a mark.
Kid A was, of course, perfect in every way. She was the first grandchild on both sides of the family, so she had no shortage of doting fans. And I was extremely enthusiastic to try my luck at parenting a human being, so I was very excited that she let me practice with her. If she was a boy, I wanted to name her Speed McCoy. Fortunately, that did not happen.
Thus began almost two decades of me coming up with crazy ideas and theories and names and opinions, and (usually and very luckily) fate intervening when I’ve gone too far. Kid A was my introduction to this insane, exhausting, fulfilling, scary, take-your-breath-away experience called parenthood. She is smart and beautiful and funny and makes me so very proud, even when she is giving me gray hair and making me talk to myself. She is driven and passionate and so very strong. I am very proud and lucky that she is my firstborn.
Happy 19th Birthday, Kid A. Sorry for all of the bad haircuts.
Wish me luck for tomorrow…