Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Family Resemblance

            Celia let out a huge belch at dinner today. We were all shocked. Michelle looked over at me, “That was you, right?”
            I shook my head. “Nope.” Then I turned to my daughter. “Celia say, ‘Excuse me.’ It’s polite to say, ‘Excuse me’ after you burp.”
            She just smiled and went back to eating. Ah, I hate to admit it, but I think she’s taking after me. All the good quality traits I’m passing along have tag-along bad ones, the belching, smacking the food, impatience. She’s got it all. Add to that the fact that she looks like the spitting image of me and it makes a dad kind of proud. Who cares if she has some unruly behavior because of it – this kid is a part of the family.
            Now I look at this new kid and wonder, “Who the heck is he, anyway?” Not only does he sleep all the time, he doesn’t really look like me or Michelle. Well, okay, he has my blue eyes and Michelle’s ears, but other than that, he looks like somebody else’s kid. I suppose when he’s older we’ll see more family resemblance, but right now I’m shocked at this kid. Who the heck is he?
            I do remember that when Celia was his age I didn’t quite know what she was like either. I didn’t think she looked like either of us, and never could have told you her personality, although she was quite a bit more spunky than the new guy.
            It’s a slog getting through all the needs they have, while getting pretty much nothing back – no real response. Michelle at least is breastfeeding, so she feels an attachment to the guy, but I just kind of look at him and think, “Hey buddy, whoever you are. You sure are small.”
            These first few months are probably most helpful when seen as preparation months – they get parents to throw themselves into this thing so that when the kid is older and seems to need less attention but still really does need all that attention, you’re in the mode of being there for them.
            I remember with Celia the moment that it all became easier was when she started smiling, around two months old. What a difference that makes to the parent, especially the dad. Up till then, the kid’s just a pooping, sleeping, eating machine.
            Hmm, actually, come to think of it, maybe he does take after me.            

1 comment:

  1. I thought I'd jump in and comment on this one. I was talking to Tricia Page several weeks ago and she was talking about babysitting you and Abe and Tim. She said you were bouncing off the walls and on the couch while the others sat quietly. She thought "so this is what it's like to have a four year old." I'm thinking it should have been, "so this is what it's like to have an Ephie!" And now there's a Celia. :-)

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