My Hang glider pilot friends called me "Pelican" and it has been my "handle" for many years but my girlfriend (of almost 4 years now) calls me "Squid". I call her "Chicken". So, it seems only reasonable that our offspring should be named "Squicken". He is due September 26th or whenever he chooses to come out and play. On his birth certificate, he will be "Cameron Michael" but he's gonna be stuck with Squicken...so be it.
Some of the joys of pregnancy are all the stupid classes one feels compelled to attend. Of course, it isn't fair in the least to refer to these wonderfully instructional forums as "stupid" because there truly is a copious amount of information disseminated during the eons of hours you sit through. Videos, lectures, illustrated instructions, and hands on practice doing all sorts of things one rarely finds palatable. Well, by "one", I mean my girlfriend and me.
What astounds me is how excited everyone in our classes is...well...everyone except the two of us. What I want to do is ask all these wide eyed expectant Moms and Dads if they realize the monumental chore of having a PERSON enter their lives. I want to shake them and say,"This isn't just a baby to play with. It's a HUMAN BEING.!" But, first of all, who am I to say such a thing AND they probably wouldn't hear it anyway.
My girlfriend and I are a good pair because we seem to have a missing gene. We are both missing the gene that allows you to be excited about learning what baby poo looks like and how radically it changes in the first week or so. We're missing the gene that makes you smile when there's a video of a fresh-from-the-exit bloody baby laid on a mother's chest.
I turned away from the movie of gore while my girlfriend looked at me and said,"Hey - I'm telling the Doc to clean that thing up before he hands it to me!" YEP - we're missing a couple of key genes.
I don't need to know how a baby's head crushes as it passes through what they affectionately call "the birth canal" and which I refer to as the "extruder" because, if I give it a more mechanical name, I'm distanced from the carnage a bit. I don't need to see photos of a "healthy" placenta, although I do find the word rolls off the tongue nicely. I DO NOT want to have discussions about what to do with the placenta nor do I want to hear about all the things other people do with their placentas (placentae?). Furthermore, we have to make decisions about what to do with the umbilical cord blood. My gene for being interested in a long discussion about this matter is missing. Matter of fact "umbilical" is a fine word and "cord" also has a charming assortment of vowels and consonants but when combined, they make me wince. I don't care to hear those two words together even when referring to an astronaut's attachment to the International Space Station.
I keep telling myself I will be grateful for all this info when Cameron Michael becomes more than a stomach lump. I keep trying to convince myself that, in the near future, I'll be happy to know it is imperative to stick, not just the nipple, but the entire areola into the baby's mouth when breast feeding. I continue attempting to persuade myself that terms like "mucus plug" and "bloody show" are normal in the vocabulary of soon to be parents. BUT - I'm missing a gene. I don't WANT those terms stuck in my head any more than "nose bleed", "diarrhea" or "hemorrhoid".
To add insult to our injury, the instructor in "Preparation for Baby Delivery" class stopped part way through one of her morbid tales of Doulah-dom and asked us to form circles of 6. In these circles we were to take turns telling the other parents-to-be what we lovingly wanted to pass on to our progeny.
My lack of a particular gene and perhaps the activation of some other less desirable genes kicked in and I found myself in,"This ain't NO, this is HELL NO" territory. Now, this group of folks are probably all nice people but I already have friends...lots of good friends. I don't know these people, I don't want to know these people, and I certainly don't want to "share" with them or have them "share" with me. The reason I attend these classes is for information not therapy or group hugs.
But, rather than be a total asshat, I sucked it up and tried to act like I cared when Julie said she wanted to teach her little girl to cook, and Len said he wanted to toss a football with his duckling (even though he was a skinny Asian dude). When it came my turn, I just said,"No thanks...I'm shy" and left it at that. It was the best I could do given my genetic coding.
All eyes trained on my girlfriend. Keep in mind, this is the girl who when asked what she did for a living, once replied,"I have a monkey cleaning business!"
She tells people I am a photographer but also own a Porta Pottie business. Her penchant for f**king with people is legendary.
I know her intimately, both literally and figuratively, so I was wondering what, given HER similar genetic coding, would come out of her mouth.
"I want to dress our little boy in girls clothes so he doesn't grow up with gender discriminating values", she delivered. It was pure and utter and simple genius. She didn't elaborate, explain, or even continue. She just smiled and surveyed all the less than comfortable faces.
Our clan of 6, sat and stared for a moment, then heads nodded politely and a couple parents agreed that might be one way to do things.
I was SO PROUD of my girlfriend. I wanted to dance around the room and have a beer but the joy was all in our twisted genetically aberrant brains. Her brilliant warping of this uncomfortable situation into a knotted bizarre joke was hysterical to me. I nodded my head and smiled approvingly at what she had "shared" while trying to contain myself.
Only the two of us knew how funny it was and we weren't gonna "share"... at least not with these folks.
Listening to: the hum of the G5