Well, here it is two weeks that I've been home with Ash and baby Henry, and they've truly been days unlike any other in my experience....wonderful, tiring, fun, exciting, new, revelatory. It's going to be really hard to go back to work tomorrow and leave the family for the day, but I'm fortunate to have had as much time as I've had. For anybody who's having a kid (and there's tons of you out there), and if you can swing it, I highly highly encourage a nice fat break from work, not just for mom (obviously) but for her partner as well. For all its family friendly posturing, the United States offers some of the most minimal provisions in the way of maternity and paternity leave of any of the civilized nations of the world. It almost seems as if any political energy available to spend on helping out families in this country is being focussed on the gay marriage battle, a fight which the right absolutely cannot win forever. Whatever laws may be getting passed now, there's simply no way they can build a dam big enough to hold back the historical tidal wave of change that is going to sweep the idiotic bigotry against gay people under the same shameful red white and blue rug as slavery, segregation, and Jim Crow. Maybe after that fight is won, then we can look to Northern Europe.
But I digress. The last two weeks have truly been amazing. A few observations:
- When it comes to sleep time, it truly does not matter what you sing to your kid, as long as you sing it nicely. I sang as much of "Fuck the Police" as I could remember to him the other night and it seems to have relaxed him fine. I'll let you know if he develops an unusually hostile disposition towards police officers at an early age.
- Can't say it enough, with boy babies, cover the hose during changings! I turned my head for one second the other day, and when I look back, he's peeing on the wall.
- Remember to scratch your dog behind the ears. He knows he's not top dog anymore, but there's no need to completely destroy his world.
- The sound of a mobile playing a lullaby as heard through a baby monitor sounds very much like an ice cream truck. If you hear this, don't go racing into the street shouting "ICE CREEEEEAM" a la Bill Cosby.
- We dress babies in a variety of patterns that we would never wear ourselves. I don't remember the last time I wore anything that featured even one, much less multiple, baby chicks.