Monday, May 08, 2006

Mother, If I Only Knew.

When I was younger, twelve or thirteen maybe, my Mom brought me downstairs before school and made me watch “The Miracle of Life.” This was the first and only time I’ve had the actual birth of a child played out before me. The only precursor for me was You Were Smaller than a Dot—a cleverly illustrated children’s book that explained in the most tactful of terms that there is no such thing as a stork.

I must admit. It was pretty shocking. I’ve got to hand it to my Mom. She took matters into her own hands, whereas nowadays it seems many parents circumvent the whole teen pregnancy issue by closing their eyes, shutting their mouths, and pretending really hard that there isn’t an issue at all. Perhaps this video turned out to be the best type of sex education. It showed me that there are actually some painfully non-romantic consequences to exercising the bidding of my raging hormones.

Last week Christy and I attended the second of three Birth Education classes at Jordan Valley Hospital—where Christy will give birth. They showed us four videos of births—3 vaginal and one C-section. I’m still in shock. I’m trying to wrap my brain around the fact that this will be us in a month and a half. I’m trying not to think about all of the many mishaps that can occur. I’m trying to trust that Christy will be okay and the baby will be okay, and that I can be a man and stand there as a pillar of strength, instead of a jello-kneed bystander likely to collapse at any moment.

One thought that kept occurring to me again and again was “Thank you, Mom.” Yes, for showing me the video years ago, but not because of that. Thank you, Mom for going through this ultimate life experience to bring me into this world. If anywhere there exists a valley of the shadow of death, it would be in all of the proper and makeshift maternity wards across the world. Thank you, Mom. Thank you. I should have been a nicer son.

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