Today I Learned You Existed
November 30, 2013
Today I found out you existed.
Don’t get me wrong, there’d been signs along the way, but today was a definitive confirmation punctuated with a dark blue cross.
The signs, you ask? Well, I’m going to go out on a limb and assume that I’ll always know your mother on a very different level then you. You see, at this stage, she’s pre-you Shannon. I have no idea what will happen when you finally show up, but let me tell you a few things about her, as she is now.
Your mom doesn’t cry watching movies. Seriously. I’ve TRIED. I’ve shown her the films that make me turn into a gooey puddle of man tears. She would instead sit there debating the inadequacies of the plot and character arcs. Just, an iron wall of logical contempt. So, until recently, I assumed that it meant she had discerning taste in film.
A few days ago, your mother forced me to watch What to Expect When You’re Expecting. I mean… seriously forced me to watch it. I thought she was joking at first. Then the movie started. And kept playing.
And then, something magical happened. No, the movie didn’t get any better than it’s dismal opener, but I looked to my right and, there it was. Your mom. Crying.
“Shannon, I’m happy you cried in a movie. I’ve dreamed of this moment… but, not like this. Not like this.”
Because What to Expect When You’re Expecting is a terrible, pandering movie that makes you laugh just enough to keep watching. But, that’s for another letter.
It was the two punch combo that made me realize your mom had changed, even just a little bit. And we both knew what came next.
So, here I am, thinking about what this all means. I’ll be honest, I’m scared. In a lot of ways I think I’ll be an excellent dad. I’m absolutely, positively going to make you a nerd, and you’re a lucky dork because it’s the cool thing to be now. Though, who knows, the pendulum might swing the other way and you’ll be ostracized by jock bullies. If that’s the case, I’m sorry in advance, but I will protect you. I promise. And if you turn out to be a jock, well, you’ve got a bit of hope in your mother. Though, she’s a nerd who manages to hide it a bit better than me and has a few athletic bones in her body.
Just please, for the love of God, don’t be a math whizz.
While I’m afraid in some ways, I’m absolutely thrilled in all the others. You’ll get to know me at a very different time in my life. The years leading to this moment have been a pretty difficult process for me, and when you want to know about them, I will gladly share them with you. But, this is another step to a life I’ve always wanted, with a partnership in your mother I’ve always dreamed of.
I’d like to tell you I’m ready. That I’ve got everything sorted out and that when you arrive your mother and I will hit the ground running. But, that’d be a lie, and it’s weird to lie to an embryo floating in my partner’s insides. Instead, I’m going to tell you that I’m preparing best I can and that I’m terrified and thrilled to see you not so long from now.
And if I pass out from witnessing the miracle of birth, please don’t judge me too harshly. I’m a bit squeamish.