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January 30, 2006

Imagination

To anyone else, the space behind the chair is just that, empty space where we store some pillows and blankets. And the pillows and blankets are just stuff to fill the space.

To anyone else, we are a typical family. Misty is Misty, Noah is Noah and I am me...

Tonight, that space became the walls of a fortress, the pillows the roof and the blankets became the gates. Once inside, Noah became Peter Pevensie and I was Obi-Wan Kenobi and we had to defend the fortress against the White Witch and The Wolf. Starring in those roles were Misty and Luke.

It still amazes me how the mind of a child works and how Noah can take the most simple things and turn them into a fantastic place. It also boggles my mind at how quickly I will jump at the chance to get pulled into his world. It really isn't all that comfortable sitting behind that chair with pillows piled on my head and Noah standing on parts of me that aren't made to be stood on. Nevertheless, I will get back there every time he asks me to and we will defend the fortress as the White Witch attacks and the roof eventually caves in. If we have time, we'll build it up again and fight the next battle. If its too late, we pack it up and start planning the for tomorrow.

At the end of the day, I look forward to whatever epic battle that Noah has planned for us. At the end of the evening, I dread the time when he doesn't ask me to join in anymore because I'm not cool and he is too old for that sort of thing.

January 24, 2006

Curve Ball

Things never work out the exact way you plan them. I think that is the one true statement in all the universe. And the moment that you think that you have things under control, the universe decides that it is time to throw you a curve ball just to see if you can hit it. Recently, the universe decided to do just that...

He checks the corners...

After 3 years of trying to move Noah to Big Brother status, Misty and I had all but given up. The doctors told us that there wasn't much that we could do short of fertility treatments to have another child and that wasn't something that we were ready to do. While we wanted to have another child, we had grown comfortable in the situation that we were in. Noah has gotten to the age that the midnight feedings and stinky work is behind us. All we have to do is give him plenty of love, a little space and make sure he gets from Point A to Point B in time. So, in the grand scheme of things, it isn't that bad. So, we left things to fate and decided that if it happened, it happened.

Back in August, Misty had been acting a little strange. A little more emotional that normal. She was just acting different that normal. She said she didn't notice anything different, but I could tell it was something... I just couldn't put my finger on exactly what it was. We joked quite a bit during the next few weeks that she might be pregnant. She even took a couple of tests and the results all came back the same: negative. After about a month of continued joking and negative tests, Misty came to me one night at about 9:30 or so and said she was going to go to the pharmacy and get a different brand of test because something just wasn't right and she needed to know. About 20 minutes later, we had proof of what we had known in one way or the other for about a month...

Here's the windup....

She was pregnant.

At that point, the fun really started. We went to the doctor and had the first sonogram. At that point, she was about 10 weeks along. Other than seeing and hearing the heart, there wasn't much to see. So we waited and started planning. We talked about the fact that we wanted another boy. First of all, Misty has kept every piece of clothing that Noah has ever worn... It it was a boy, we would be set for clothes. Secondly, I understand boys. I know what they think and how they react. I know what drives them. I have that system down. Even after almost 10 years of being married, I have no real insight into the mind of a woman. To me, it was hands down... It had to be a boy.

We told Noah that he was going to be a big brother and he got excited. He immediately told us that it was going to be a girl and that her name was going to be Ella. Misty and I chalked that one up to the fact that he has a bit of a crush on Anne Hathaway and had been watching Ella Enchanted a lot recently. We told him that we would have to wait and see... All the while talking to each other in masculine pronouns... Him... He...

So we waited and planned.
Planned and waited.

The big day was shortly after Thanksgiving. We were going to find out the sex of the baby. We took Noah out of school so he could come along and find out at the same time we did. Misty got on the table, the tech fired up the machine and.... She couldn't tell. The baby was sitting cross legged and there was no showing what was, or wasn't, lurking between the legs. The doctor scheduled another sonogram for the week after Christmas and sent us on our way.

So we waited... There wasn't much more planning that could go on at this point. Without knowing if the room would be pink or blue, there was no point in buying curtains, crib sheets or blankets. And it was hard to turn Misty loose buying clothes without knowing if we needed bloomers or blue jeans.

The big day rolled around and, once again, we took Noah along with us. Misty got on the table and within seconds, the sono tech had frozen a picture on the screen. One glance and I knew....

And here's the pitch...

It is a girl.

We walked out and Misty had a bit of a funny smile on her face. Even though she had said that she wanted a boy, I think deep down inside, she was hoping for a girl. For me, this has already turned me into an overprotective father. I have started glaring at little boys because I know what they are thinking. Or at least what they will be thinking in about 16 years or so.

After much debate, it ended up that Noah is right. Our little girl will be named Isabella. For short, we will probably call her Ella or Bella. And, no... we will not call her Izzy.

Beyond that, I don't know anything other than I have a lot to learn.

And...

I'd like to say that the next thing that the announcer says is that I have hit this one out of the park. Unfortunately, I don't know. The ball has just left the pitcher's hand and I'm watching it as it streaks toward me. I know I'm going to swing. I'm sure I will connect. As for the rest, we'll just have to wait and see. This will be a game with extra innings and we won't know how it turns out until the very end.

Stay tuned...