I tapped this out last night. Damned hospitals and their no wireless. The three of us are home now! Time for a nap? Yes, time for a nap. But first:
Hello from the new daddy! Let’s start with the basics. I haven’t finished reading all the wonderful posts my friends and family have put up yet, so my apologies if I’m repeating information. Then again, even the most mundane of Maeve factoids is music to my ears the twentieth time I hear it.
Maeve Katherine Garvey was born at 3:42am on July 8, 2006. She was 5 pounds, 12.4 ounces, and 19.5 inches long. She cried immediately – her first breath of real air made sure to pass over her vocal cords on its way out. Both Lisa and Maeve are happy and healthy, if not a little tired.
I have too much to say. Too many words. Too many thoughts to get down on paper. I want to explain to you all how suddenly everything makes sense. It’s like a scientist ran into the room and said “Wait! Two plus two is actually four!” and here, all along, the whole world had built entire civilizations on the belief that 2+2 most assuredly equaled purple. I want to explain to you how suddenly nothing makes sense. I’m no longer My Own Man. I eat for her. I breathe for her. If I watch that rerun of Cheers where everyone wears the squeaky shoes, I’m doing it no longer as Mike Garvey, but because it’s a task deemed necessary in my capacity as Mike Garvey, father of Maeve Garvey.
Just too much.
I’ll start out slow and tell you about the first time I really held my daughter. She was only a few hours old and Lisa had just finished feeing her. She was pissed. Not drunk – I mean angry at the world. She was very definitely rethinking her decision to be born and had the lungpower to express these thoughts to her mom and dad and the nurses and that lamp and, hell, to whoever was in earshot. My guess is that included some parts of Pennsylvania.
Anyway, I waded through the soundwaves and took her from the bassinet. My intent was to pick her up and subsequently remove her from the smoke alarm’s test button, but no such luck. Out of ideas, I tucked her into my left arm and started the dance: step, sway, bob, weave, step, parry, dodge, etc. And I sang (Fools Rush In – it was the first thing that came to mind). And after a minute or two... it worked.
And I was flooded by an overwhelming sense of purpose. I AM A GOD AMONG MEN. I HAVE THE POWER TO PLACATE MY CHILD. I AM USEFUL. She was still awake, still alert, so I continued to sing and sway. We made eye contact and suddenly hours of preparation meant nothing. A lifetime of preparation would have been as fruitless, honestly. We stared at each other as hours of tension suddenly caught up with me and when I sang “take my hand / take my whole life too” I cried. My breath just wouldn’t work anymore. In an effort to calm her, she stopped me in my tracks.
2 years ago