In a departure from protocol, Nicole asked me to blog for her tonight. (I'm her husband, if you don't know.) She feels like she has nothing to say right now, and I think she's suffering from blogger's angst. ("No one could possibly care about the run-of-the-mill details of my boring life.") It will pass, I'm sure.
What she's probably expecting is that I'll fill you in on what Noah's up to -- how his obsession with the Teletubbies (his first obsession! how sweet!) continues unabated, plus a bizarre super-obsession with a poorly animated soft-shoe-dancing bear that appears in several episodes (he cries if we let the program go forward without watching that part at least four times); how he's slept relatively decently the past two nights (up briefly at 1 a.m. and up for good around 6); how he charmed my father, his wife and my 96-year-old grandmother on a visit today, running like a screaming meemie around my dad's apartment, laughing heartily with everyone and begging us to retrieve his ball from down the blocked-off stairs, only to immediately throw it right back down (memo to my family: you saw this twice; it's funny exactly three times); how he continues to master animal vocabulary, and even a few new human words (he's really started mimicking much more readily, and we have a sneaking fear it has something to do with increased TV consumption); and how generally he's really incredibly fun right now, happy and smiling and impish with only the briefest dark clouds, and we're in no hurry to see him start leapfrogging developmental stages.
What Niki's not expecting is that I'll hijack this post to make sure that all her blogging friends know exactly how fantastic she is, as a wife and friend but especially as a mom. I feel we're pretty good parents, and I know I try my best, but the depth and absolute surety of her commitment to Noah amazes me every day. Make no mistake, like all parents we're dog-tired all the time, and Niki has it much worse than I do. Because of the way things just seemed to have developed , in addition to being with Noah all day while I'm at work she bears the brunt of managing his quirky sleeping patterns. But while sometimes I can't stop staring off into space and dreaming I live in a giant bed set in a field of beds beside a stream flowing with beds, Nicole always seems to summon the energy not only to take care of Noah but to really engage him, and most importantly to enjoy him. I always heard that great parents are hard-wired to put their kids first in everything, and while I know I'd throw myself in front of a bus for Noah, Nicole truly is thinking about him, his happiness and his development in every plan she makes, from major life decisions to figuring out to do with an unplanned morning. Again, it's amazing to me.
I always knew I wanted to have a family, but being an only child from a relatively unhappy marriage who never, ever was around any small children consistently before Noah, I had no idea what it would take to parent with even marginal success. I am grateful beyond words to have Nicole as a partner in this, and when I'm not sure how to proceed, I just follow her lead. (Hey, that rhymed, Jesse Jackson-style.)
This turned from what I intended as a quick shout-out to my old lady to a rambling, stream-of-consciousness mess. I apologize if I've bored you or given you the willies. But given one shot at this forum, I had some things to say. We now return you to your regularly scheduled blogger.