I am ready to be a father.
I know there are a lot of people reading this blog who think that statement is…
d.) All of the Above
The reason why I say that….you have no idea how many people have told me – with a devilish smirk and a slow shake of the head – “I can’t WAIT until you have kids.”
I think I’ve heard that statement around 86 times – each reference with the same underlying meaning: “Don’t worry, Drew. When you’re a dad, you’ll get yours!”
Well, I’m ready to get mine.
Tanya and I have started seriously trying. (“Seriously” consists of ovulation tests, prenatal vitamins, and her screaming “hurry up and put the dog outside.”)
We’ve also been talking about the possibility of adoption. Because of our ages, our desire for a large family, and our intense desire to give back, this is a tremendous option. (Tanya’s involvement in CASA – a national child advocate program – has also helped open our eyes to the lives we can touch through this process.)
In a perfect world, we would get pregnant right now, have a summer baby, start seriously looking into adoption – possibly pull the trigger this time next year, conceive another child a year later, and have a BIG, loving family in less than three years.
“Drew, are you really sure you’re ready for that?”
It’s funny you ask.
This weekend, I received a sneak peek into my “perfect world.” I spent two days with my business partner, her husband, and their children. (Three boys – ages 4, 6 and 8.) We made a marathon trip to Oklahoma to watch TCU play the Sooners.
It was towards the end of the trip when someone made a slap-across-the-face comment to me. I think I was staring blankly at the three little boys running around their uncle’s living room like they were on fire.
“Don’t worry. If you spread them out a little bit better than we did, it’s not as overwhelming.”
Ummmm….remember earlier in the post…have baby, adopt, have another baby, adopt…BIG family…not spread out?
I think I’ll be OK, though. This weekend was a good test. Here were some of the highlights (Not to brag, but I think I scored a C+ … which IS passing):
The six-year-old got carsick 40 minutes outside of Fort Worth.
• “Daddy can we pull over?”
• He threw up in a grocery sack just as we pulled into a Braum’s parking lot.
• The bag had hole in it and started to leak before he could make it outside the van.
• The oldest kept talking in third-person and reminding himself not to look.
• The youngest, very aware of where we were, kept asking for ice cream in the middle of the chaos.
• The sick child had to be stripped down, and he rode the rest of the trip in the seat right behind me with no shirt, a package of Wet Wipes, and a new plastic bag.
• There were no more incidents.
The site and smell of throw-up didn’t make me hurl … I think anytime someone speaks in third-person it’s hilarious (especially when that person is eight years old) … the fact that there were no other incidents was HUGE – especially because of the new seating arrangement in the van.
– – –
The youngest decided to head-butt the sidewalk.
• He actually tripped over the curb in a dimly lit parking lot and smashed his face pretty good.
• After the initial shock wore off, he realized he was injured and wanted everyone else to know it, too.
• His sweet aunt ran to his rescue.
• Even though he looked like he was in a car wreck, he was bouncing off the walls the next morning.
I saw him face plant, and while his aunt was loving him up, I just kept telling him to “shake it off” . . . when I saw the blood, I decided to let a “real adult” handle the situation . . . I also learned that kids are pretty resilient.
– – –
On our way home, we had to stop for a bathroom break 6 minutes into the trip. (That is no lie and/or exaggeration . . . 360 seconds from leaving the house.)
• As we’re pulling out of the driveway: “Did everyone use the bathroom?” . . . “Let’s see if we can make it all the way to Fort Worth without stopping!”
• Six minutes later: “Daddy, I need to use the restroom” . . . “I thought you went right before we left” . . . “I went pee pee, but I held my poo poo.”
• As they’re getting out of the car, the youngest says, “I need to go poo poo, too.”
It really wasn’t that big of deal, we had to stop anyway because in the hustle and bustle of packing up and leaving, their mother left her keys at the house. A family member was in route to deliver them . . . It made me wonder, though: Would they have continued to “hold their poo poo” all the way home OR would we have stopped a few minutes later anyway? . . . I think kids just know when to take advantage of an opportunity.
Other minor tests included a running request/inquiry to play with my cell phone, the peaks and valleys of sugar highs, and the fact that watching cartoons and playing Wii trumps Sportscenter on Sunday morning.
Here are some other things that I simply learned:
• Kids don’t sleep in – even if the adults tailgated for over five hours the day before and finally went to bed around 1 a.m.
• If you give a child under 10 years old the choice of where to eat – it’s going to be McDonald’s.
• Chocolate milk is VERY popular with young kids. (Temperature of the milk is not important.)
• If you don’t want kids to climb on the furniture – don’t buy it.
• There is always A LOT of hustle and bustle when there are kids involved.
When I told their parents that I was going to blog about me tagging along on their weekend family get-away, I saw both of them cringe.
ME: “Are you worried?”
MOM: “I just don’t want people to think we’re a crazy family.”
I wasn’t going to use the adjective “crazy” – I think “perfect” is a lot more fitting.