From The Daddy Desk: Happy First Birthday, SonPosted: November 18, 2013
Can you believe you turned one this weekend??? We celebrated the Kimchi Latkes way: by making you wear a funny Korean hat, stuffing ourselves with delicious food, and surrounding ourselves with loved ones.
We also, of course, reflected on your first year of life.
When you were born, people often asked me if I was relieved to “finally” have a boy. Putting aside that those people utterly failed to appreciate the full awesomeness of your sisters, there’s no denying that you I have a lot in common (though whether that’s because we’re both gentlemen, I’ll leave for another day).
Allow me to share a few examples:
(1) Your Mother
The apple didn’t fall far from the tree here: you and I both really, really like your mom. Unfortunately, we also find ourselves locked in a knock-down, year-long competition for . . . ahem . . . intimate time with her, which I must confess you are winning (for now) due to your insatiable desire to nurse ALL night, every night.
Sadly for you, my hungry little friend, I have some inside information that you do not: your mother plans to cut off your all-night gravy train around Thanksgiving weekend, so I recommend that you savor your place by her side while you can, because the clock is ticking on your spot in our bed. In other words, you may have won the battle, but you will surely lose this war.
Speaking of violent acts, we also share another thing in common: crime.
As you know, I practice criminal defense. Similarly, you have (somehow) managed to exclusively acquire nicknames that connote criminal conduct.
It is widely known that your online persona is “Little Pirate,” and that you thus swashbuckle around the internet stealing hearts, minds, and other treasures across the globe.
Less well known is your nickname at home: Keyser Söze, which of course, we took from the great underworld mastermind in The Usual Suspects. (Your true name Caj, pronounced “Kai,” has given rise to this not-so-creative moniker.)
To whatever extent a baby’s demeanor accurately foretells the future, I’m actually fairly confident that you’ll never require my professional services. Unfortunately, however, I am less confident about your firebrand sister, Chipmunk; in fact, sometimes I worry that our version of “take your child to work day” will involve you and me at a bail hearing with that little provocateur in a jumpsuit… Let’s hope she proves me wrong.
(3) Your Sisters
Which brings me to my last topic: your sisters. Although they’re only five and two-and-a-half, your sisters manage to strike deep, bone-chilling fear in both of our hearts.
On the outside, of course, they’re all sparkly pink princesses, puppy dogs and rainbows. But you and I know the truth: that living with Mouse and Chipmunk is an exercise in survival—surviving an incessant barrage of ear-splitting shrieks, assaults on our bodies, and dizzying surround-sound chatter that never, ever, ever ends unless they happen to pass out for some reason (usually bedtime), but not before you’re crying on the outside and I’m bawling on the inside.
LP, you and I are men who appreciate a quiet moment of solitude and repose. Some day, we should build some sort of barrier—a wall, perhaps (I know it’s crude)—and simply sit on our side, sipping mint juleps and enjoying some well-earned peace and quiet while your sisters crash up against the other side trying to get through. Doesn’t that sound like some good father-son bonding???
Down What? Down Where?
In closing, I feel I’d be remiss if I failed to mention a large elephant in our little corner of the blogosphere: Down syndrome. I won’t lie to you, LP—Down syndrome has been a big deal for me and your mom this year.
To be clear, I am not saying that Down syndrome actually affects our daily lives very much, because it doesn’t. Instead, I’m saying that Down syndrome has altered the way we think, feel, and see the world in a fundamental way, and one that we, quite frankly, wouldn’t trade for anything.
Equally important, though, is that NONE of that has ANYTHING to do with you, because you are not Down syndrome, you just have it. You are my son, and a shit-awesome one at that. You are a charmer, LP, with your goofy little grin and the hilarious (recent) development that you’ve taken to purring when you’re content. You love music, dancing, army-crawling, and (sometimes) your sisters. You love your mom’s cooking, but have recently—and rightly—decided that you hate the fish oil we force feed you every day.
In other words, you’re a baby, LP, and our baby at that. Here’s wishing you many long years of happiness and health. We love you, dude. Hope you had a great birthday!