Tetrakaidecaphobia

from the greek “tetrakaideca” meaning “fourteen” …  meaning fear of the number 14, or in this case, of having a 14 year old.

Luckily, I don’t really suffer from this disorder, but for most of my life I certainly would have if you had asked me to imagine ever having a kid that age.  But here I am, and alive to tell the tale.

If you’re expecting something mushy from today’s blog, you’ll probably be disappointed.  As I’ve said numerous times over a number of years, I couldn’t have ordered a better kid custom made from the factory.  That’s as sappy as it’s going to get today I’m afraid.

Instead, I was just sitting here after seeing him off to school kind of laughing to myself about a few things, figured I might as well share since there’s at least a few of you who don’t know these stories already but easily could have heard them if you’d been around at the right moment.  Nothing here that hasn’t been told fairly publicly before, and my son already knows all of them so there’s not much risk of unintentional embarrassment here*

For example, there’s the one about how I lost the car at the hospital.  It could have happened to anybody, honest.  We showed up at the hospital in the wee hours of the morning, pulling into the handy dandy predesignated parking area outside the E.R. set aside for dropping off mothers-to-be.  Once the we got the paperwork started, they pointed out that I needed to move the car since spaces were kinda limited, so I did.  Came back , finished up all the prep work and room assignment, etc. so forth and so on.  It became apparent that we might be in for a rather long day.  After maybe a hundred or a hundred fifty pages of the novel I brought to pass the time, I figured I ought to go move the car out of the pricy short-term parking & into the more reasonable long-term parking.  Yeah, it was an excuse to slip out for a smoke or three, but it did need doing.  Down the hall, into the elevator, down to the ground floor, out the door to the parking garage and … umm.  Oh,it’s over here … no it isn’t.  {smacks forehead} Silly me, I put it over th … no.  Hmm.  Took about an hour to find it.  I only missed by about four FLOORS worth of parking deck on the first try, ground I slowly covered on foot, getting a little more frantic by the moment.   Luckily my wife was at least able to feign amusement when I finally got back to her room.

Then there’s the one my wife actually likes to tell on me from the following day.  Well, actually the same day since he was born a bit after midnight on the 16th, but you know what I mean.  We get through the birth, and all of the stuff that follows while they document & record & measure & weigh & all that other stuff.   After a while back in the room they take the beloved newborn away for a couple of hours to … well I still don’t actually know what the purpose was, other than maybe to let the parents recover a little bit or something.  Maybe they’re giving him tips & tricks on how to handle parents, whatever.  At that point I’d never seen anything more beautiful than the little rollaway bed in the corner of the room & out like a light I went.  Couple of hours later they bring the baby back and deep in the embrace of sleep I hear a voice.  I don’t actually remember much more than that for a while, but I’m told that the following conversation took place.
Her: “Honey, Will’s back.
Me: “Does he still look the same?”
Her: “Yes.”
Me: “Good”
Me: snore

Of course there are others:
— My reaction to parenting classes
— My reaction after discovering some crucial things that parenting classes omitted
— The look on his tiny face when we were alone at home with him for the first time, just the three of us.  He slowly looked at her, then me, then back at her, and back at me … and we both knew in that moment that he was thinking “Oh s***, neither of them have the foggiest idea what they’re doing”
— Our introduction to colic about April 30, as we became “The House That Dreaded Sundown”
— A wide range of others too numerous to mention.

Time sure does fly, but it sure can be fun … most of the time.

Happy birthday Will 🙂

*When I embarrass my child,  as I frequently do in order to live up to my sacred responsibility as a parent, I prefer to do it on purpose.  More fun that way.

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1 Comment

Filed under Personal

One response to “Tetrakaidecaphobia

  1. debbieroper

    The intentional embarrassment of our progeny is a sacred parental duty! I never miss an opportunity to perform my duty.

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