Fatherhood: Day III — First Day Home

Fun fact: a baby’s cry registers at something like 130 decibels. That’s the same as a military jet taking off.

In my latter years of my tenure with the residential camp in Maine, there were a handful of us who wore Motorola walkie talkies. Every once in a while, someone would report a “code brown” to the office. The office would ask if anyone with a radio was close enough to the scene to assist. For a handful of us, it turned into a quasi-competition. Fixing codes became a badge of honor. You racked up numbers. At night, we’d exchange stories of our battles with the bowl.

I haven’t worked at the camp in five years, but I feel the spirit of the code competition alive and well in the diaper realm. I’m sure there will be impossible moments. I’m convinced I will eventually wretch at one of the mudpies baking in baby’s bottom. But the way I see it, mama’s work right now is done. She gets to engage or pass on any code for the foreseeable future.

We started the day back at the birthplace. Originally scheduled for release and a return home tomorrow, mama and baby were in good enough shape to head home today. Hallelujah. That was a grind of a week for me, and I didn’t even do anything. Mama kicked ass, didn’t even ask for names, and called valet for her car.

Towards the end of Season 5 of The West Wing (first season not written by Aaron Sorkin and coincidentally the first season not to take home the Emmy for best show), the President is having cocktails with other parents whose children had graduated from Georgetown earlier in the day. They gentlemen were exchanging stories about the drive home; doing 15 mph with the hazards on. No hazards for me today, but the speed was spot on. Luckily we live less than a mile from the birthplace, so the commute was short and sweet.

Something I learned on the way home from the hospital, every other human behind the wheel of a car is a threat to my kid. I used to scoff at people who talked like this. Completely makes sense. Parent’s are not rational.

Been home for about seven hours now. Little ladies been through a couple of nappies, sucked the boob a few times, and now it feels like we’re auditioning for a remake of the Al Pacino/Robin Williams thriller Insomnia. I hope this superdad, competitive mentality has legs because I’m not quite sure what day or year it is right now.

Oh, something else new for the knowledge chamber in my skull, newborns can cry at ungodly decibel levels and sound like what I imagine a pig farm sounds like. This little piggie has some lungs on her. I’ve decided to keep a spreadsheet of things I’m tolerating out of love (loaded diapers, squealing in my ear, not sleeping at all) and when that information might come in handy (graduations, birthdays, wedding, etc.).

Sometimes you cross the threshold of exhaustion where a sudden burst of energy surges through your body. I feel that kicking in now, so I’m gonna ride that energy wave to get the boss anything she needs and get some sleep.

Day III, done.

I write things. Some of them funny. Some of them smart. Some of them nonsense, but they all come from me.

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