she’s a little lighthouse

11/16/05

FamilyOklahomaSign75(bl).jpg

1975

IanOklahomaSign2005(bl).jpg

2005

It’s funny to think of it now, but before Lucy was born, I was actually afraid that there would be no connection. I’ve been told that some parents just don’t develop an unspoken, preternatural bond with their offspring; they’re just not hardwired that way. As with all things I’d experienced over the last four years, I just kept repeating the mantra given to me by someone wise:

Nothing worth doing comes without a healthy dose of ambivalence.

Nothing worth doing comes without a healthy dose of ambivalence.

Nothing worth doing comes without a healthy dose of ambivalence.

And here I am, three days out, and I am physically pained not to be around her. Imagine how hard it must have been for those going off to war, like Tessa’s mom’s dad, who fought the Battle of the Bulge with a six-month-old left in Texas.

Maternity and paternity leave in this country is woeful. I realize that lots of parents run desperately back to work as though their sanity depends on it, but I couldn’t be one of them. As XTC joked as the Dukes of Stratosphear,

You bring me colour where once I had just black and white…

Now I have rainbows appearing round here in the night…

Well I don’t need any cigarettes or beer from a jug

You’re my drug-

You can slow me down or pick me up

You’re my drug-

And I don’t ever know if I can give you up.

0 thoughts on “she’s a little lighthouse

  1. Just Andrew

    sure, that’s all good and stuff, but what happened to the restrooms? You’d think some 30 odd years later there would be more restrooms, not less.
    I’m concerned.

    Reply
  2. Mom

    Just Andrew, I wondered the same thing. And where is that other brother, Ian? Maybe in the Rest Room –>
    By the way, I experienced that “torn away from” feeling every time I went somewhere without y’all with me.
    Also by the way, that connection will NEVER go away. Even across a gazillion miles and years. It’s both the curse and the blessing of parenthood.

    Reply
  3. Tanya

    Aw. I echo your mom’s comments that it doesn’t go away. Even during the irritating (but cute!) toddler years when it seems like the tantrums last all day with only a nap to break it up. And yet, still I can’t wait to see him. ;)

    Reply
  4. kjf

    have your camera ready for when lucy sees you after this separation! her smile may just take up the entire photo. (although the better photo may be of you seeing your little girl) just give tessa the camera and indulge us all with the results!!

    Reply
  5. Beth

    “Nothing worth doing comes without a healthy dose of ambivalence.”
    Words to live by. I’m going to write them down and them where I can see them every day.

    Reply
  6. cullen

    True that mi man Ian; I returned to teaching this fall after appreciable and much appreciated time off for “Paternity leave” with 2 yr. old Emily and six year old Sam. The little girl and I are bonded like crazy glue; she loves her babysitter and hasn’t flinched not to have mom or dad home this year, but there’s a deep connection we forged mostly during our quantity of quality time. That and her post footwork is immaculate for a toddler; Dad puts the FUN in fundamentals. Drive safe and eventually north right?

    Reply
  7. Annie

    Hel-LO–godmother speaking here–
    Not to offset the pain of separated dads–at all–but what about the pain of separated godmothers?!?!? Do you know how wonderful/sucky it is to be experiencing all of Lucy’s beauteous growth over the last few months without seeing her?? In her little person??? Not to mention you and Tessa.
    Now, I realize I didn’t make it to Texas for golf, and for that I will be forever regretful. And thank god I will see her this weekend.
    It’s just so weird, how someone is born that you already love–and see in fits and starts–I wonder if this is like being a grandparent.
    I LOVE HER!!! And I hardly even know her–yet–
    Cannot wait to see you guys. For real.

    Reply
  8. Laurie from Manly Dorm

    Hi. Forgive me for being nosey, but I see that Annie the godmother posted a message, and I started thinking. . . was Lucy baptized? What kind of event/ceremony did you guys have to make Annie a GODmother? Have you decided to introduce Lucy to some religion? Is she a nominal GODmother? Or has Annie made professions to take care of Lucy’s religious soul?
    Just wondering, considering your previous posts re: religion, etc. I normally would not ask someone about their religious goings-on, but . . . just wondering. Feel free to tell me that its NUNYA business.

    Reply

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