Baby’s First Cover Up
I was going to live in Tokyo, New York City, or London. It was something I said constantly, so long as it was a huge city far from my hometown it was on my radar and up for consideration. In March of 2015, I even sat with my adviser to look into schools in the Chicago area, this was something that I was set on. Being the stubborn lad I was, the only thing that could change my mind was my own desire.
In April of 2015 I was asked to stay at my sister and brother-in-law’s house. She was pregnant and was going into labor after 9 long months. I originally anticipated sticking around for a day or two but that wound up becoming 5 due to some complications. Being the one family member who’s stuck with watching a house and simultaneously out of the loop always sucks. On day 5 I was told the baby was fine after he wound up ingesting some fluids during the entire process of my sister being in labor. The next week he was brought home and my family and I were expected to go up and see him. This is where my whole plan went to hell.
Holding a baby is absolutely terrifying. You’re literally holding onto this thing that will wind up experiencing life and have this whole view on the world and perceptions, and hopefully be around after you’re gone. It’s absolutely mental. It was at this time that all of my plans changed. While holding him and seeing him, I made the decision that I didn’t want to be a holiday uncle. That is, the uncle who shows up to a birthday or two, Christmas and Thanksgiving. Then the rest of the year peaces out and maybe talks once or twice to the kid. Instead I wanted to have the chance of going to a sporting event, choir/play, or even just take the kid on a trip to a toy store and hang out for the day. I think this whole idea came from the extremely distant relationship I had with my uncle. He wasn’t a bad man, and he didn’t live far away. He actually lived a short 10 minute drive from my house. He just never really connected at any level with me, or he never felt like he could possibly. I think we often make decisions for newer generations based off of and in spite what we went through while growing up. It’s the, “I won’t let that happen” or “that won’t be me” attitude.
The moment I held my nephew I felt compelled to be there for the little nugget. I can’t even imagine how it would’ve been, and hopefully/eventually will be, had it been my own child. Tokyo, Chicago and London became Buffalo, Erie and Pittsburgh. And I often look forward to seeing my nephew more than anyone else while visiting home. There’s absolutely no better feeling than a little kid saying your name for the first time and then doing something in the vague form of hug to you.