My earliest memory is moving into the home I’d eventually grow up in. I was probably two, maybe three. I remember the kitchen counters being as tall as the Eiffel Tower and I remember the backyard was dirt.
That’s it. My earliest memory and that’s all I remember.
I don’t remember my mom or dad. I don’t remember diapers or teething. From age zero to age four, I don’t remember anything.
This is nothing shy of a tragedy. I understand that now. I understand that the hardest years of my parents’ life were the ones I don’t remember. At all.
So, Mom and Dad, accept this as a belated thank you. Because I understand now what you went through and it deserves recognition (albeit 32 years late).
Before having a child, I had a lot of questions.
What will she look like?
Will she be healthy?
How will my wife handle labor?
Who will I become?
I was always a little awkward around dogs. With their slobber and farts and fur loss. Always jumping and licking. Always staring at you with those helpless eyes. What did they want from me? I could never tell.
Gender reveals. It’s a pregnancy milestone. One that you spend countless hours wondering about. The ultrasound date nears, the anticipation grows. You make plans around it. A gender reveal party. A carefully crafted social media post. And however it happens, it all boils down to a singular moment. That moment you open the envelope. That moment you cut the gender cake or those colored balloons rise from out a big box. It’s a moment you can’t recreate. A moment that stays with you forever.
Yeah, it’s supposed to be like that. Except when it’s not. Take ours, for instance. Ours…malfunctioned.
Let me explain.