Ye Olde Archive Archived Posts: 2004-2009

29Nov/10Off

T-Minus ???

this about sums it up, courtesy of flickr.com user -- ekpatterson --We took last week off, partially to wait for the baby and partially because there was snow and ice and school was canceled. It was an excellent week, though the wife had to adjust since she thought she would get some quiet alone time, and instead she got a full house every day except Monday. As the week progressed, though, I know she started to feel guilty that she was already burning through her maternity time and that the baby obviously had a different time table. Now here we are, starting to burn through a second week of leave, and I'm heading back to work while we wait, since I only have, at best, two weeks off for when the baby gets here. I could rant and rave about how nice it would be to get paid maternity and paternity time, about how I feel like our country doesn't really support people who want to have babies, even those responsible families who support themselves ... but I won't rant, and I won't rave. But it would be nice.

Yesterday we had a nice quiet day to ourselves. The rain cleared and I took Georgie to the park. We haven't been in awhile, since we've been going for walks through the woods instead. The park is nice because it's much more of an endurance contest for the dog, and when we get home he's thoroughly worn out. It also helps wear down his nails, since we spend a good ten minutes, at least, throwing the ball around in the basketball court and he gets to run around on pavement. At home, on a friend's advice, we had some wine, and kissed a lot. We played cribbage while we waited, and listened to some of the birth music we'd picked out, and tried our best to be patient. From about 6:30 on that evening there were some pretty good contractions, but they eased and we went to sleep.

For my part, I've stopped asking the wife if "anything exciting is happening", because it just annoys her and makes her feel pressured. If I ask her how she's doing, I try to do it in an upbeat and encouraging tone that implies that I simply care about her well-being and want her to be comfortable. Which I think annoys her slightly less. I told her last night that, at this point, I would stop asking, since the baby obviously wasn't getting the hint, and just wait for her to tell me if anything changed. Obviously baby has its own timeline, and even though I suspect that it might be a bit lazy, baby's calling the shots right now and won't be rushed.

Anyway, the wine and kissing wasn't all that bad, effective or not, so maybe we'll try that again tonight.

Filed under: fatherhood No Comments
26Nov/10Off

Being Thankful (and Impatient)

Tick tick tick, courtesy of flickr.com user -- John Carleton --I think it's important to be thankful every day, as much as possible, and for the most part, there's a lot to be thankful for. That said, I have nothing against picking one day to be particularly thankful, and anyway, if it weren't for Thanksgiving I don't know if I'd ever eat pumpkin pie, and that's definitely something to be thankful for.

We spent Thanksgiving Day with the wife's parents, who live just a mile away, and it was one of the more enjoyable Thanksgivings I remember in awhile. We were off the hook for bringing anything, since we didn't know if we were going to make it or not. The plan was that if the baby came then I'd go over and get some plates to go, but as it happens the baby is still hanging out so we got to fill up on turkey and stuffing and good company. Good job, baby.

Of course, now that we got to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner it's time for you to stop laying about, baby. Tuesday was the "not before" date, and you got past that admirably, and Thursday was the official due date, and you let us enjoy a nice family dinner. But now it's Friday, baby, and I feel like maybe you lack motivation, or maybe you're just lazy. Whatever the case may be, we're getting impatient waiting for you, so really, any time now. Today would be fine. Really.

So today is Friday, and all the snow has melted, and it's raining. Mr. Ten was disappointed that the snow is disappearing, but we told him that we almost never get snow in November, anyway, and it was surely a good sign of things to come in terms of a cold, snowy winter. And since he's into technicalities, we pointed out that it is still autumn, after all, to which he replied that winter should really just start on the first day that it snows, and that summer, in turn, should begin on the first day that it's really sunny and hot.

Sometimes it's hard to argue with ten-year-old logic, even when said logic is pretty ridiculous.

While we spend today waiting for that lazy baby, we'll go out for a walk in the woods with Georgie (our 1 1/2 year old German Shorthair Pointer), and we'll finally get around to raking the leaves in the yard, and maybe I'll even borrow the neighbor's ladder so I can clear out the gutters, and the wife will do some weeding and, for the most part, we'll keep busy. But really we'll be looking at our watches and saying "Gee, I really wish that baby would get with the program already."

I mean really, baby. Any time now.

Filed under: fatherhood 2 Comments
24Nov/10Off

On Preparing for Fatherhood

There's Still Good in Him, courtesy of flickr.com user -- Pedro Vezini --Darth Vader wasn't a very good father. At least, not at first. Even if you overlook a life of absenteeism, with no child support to speak of, he also ends up being an evil murderer and destroyer of worlds. Add to that the fact that he cuts off his son's hand, and he pretty much gets worst father of the year award.

And then he saves the day.

Anyone can be a father. It's a biological power that most men possess, and it isn't in any way special. Being a good father takes preparation, though, and some hard work, and possibly even some strengths of character than not every man comes by naturally.

I always thought that I would be a good father. I thought of myself as patient, which seemed important. I thought that I was a good listener and an excellent teacher, that I had strong moral character and good values, and that I was, for lack of a better word, pretty cool. Thinking that you're cool is probably the downfall of many a dad, especially when they start dealing with teenagers, but that's neither here nor there.

When I met my wife and got engaged, I instantly became a father figure for a five-year-old, and I think I was pretty good at it. I'd be lying if I said that the idea of being a father, especially an insta-father with a five-year-old, didn't make me balk somewhat. I pushed on anyway, mainly because when you meet the person you know you want to marry, nothing else matters that much. Besides, I traipsed off to Montreal for graduate school mere months after getting engaged, and being a part-time, long-distance fiance / step-dad wasn't too tough, especially with my studies to keep me busy.

I've since finished graduate school, and got married, and become a full-time step-dad with no more excuses. And I'm not quite as excellent at it as I had hoped I would be. My levels of patience vary on a minute-to-minute basis, and I often feel too preoccupied to be a good listener or teacher. I'm still pretty cool, but all that means is that the now ten-year-old is very, very interested in anything I do or say, and that I don't get a moment's peace. And even saying that, I know it's not actually true, or fair, but as a perception it's fairly strong.

When I found out that I was going to become a father for real, I was a little overwhelmed. That's a pretty natural response, I think. Overwhelmed, and excited, and anxious, and excited, and a little wondrous, and somewhat panicked. The man who has just found out he is going to become a father begins to simultaneously think in two different directions: how he can create more security for him and his family; and whether or not his passport is in order. Hey, we all have our moments.

The nice thing about human babies is that they take a long time to show up. For the better part of a year, the expectant father gets to work on bolstering the feelings of excitement and wonder, and subduing those of anxiety and panic. Expectant fathers get to reevaluate the qualities they feel would make them good fathers, and work to make sure that those qualities won't disappear as soon as the baby is born.

Darth Vader was caught by surprise by fatherhood, and consequently, he was pretty miserable at it. Given time to adjust, though, and to prepare, he actually became a pretty decent father. He saved his son's life, in the end, along with untold numbers of people in galaxies far far away.

For my part, I hope I can skip the evil part of the whole process, and get straight to being a good father. My patience is less finicky, and I try to take the time to listen and to teach, no matter how busy I might be otherwise. I think that a lot of being a good father is being right here, right now, not wondering where else you could be, or what other things you could be doing. And hey, I think I'm pretty good at that, for the most part, and I am still pretty cool, for the most part.

I guess we'll see how it goes.

Filed under: fatherhood 4 Comments
22Nov/10Off

A New Blog, A New Adventure

Courtesy of flickr.com user -- Storm Crypt --Welcome to my new blogging project, Roly Poly. As I tinker with the site some more, back pages like "About" and "Links" and such will begin to fill in, but for now, being that I will constantly tinker with those things rather than using this blog for what it's actually for (that would be writing), I thought I should put those things aside for a minute and get my feet wet.

My name is Ahniwa Ferrari, and I'm 30 years old. I am, among other things: a librarian in Olympia, WA; a husband; a step-dad to a 10-year-old; a soon-to-be papa (our due date is November 25!); a gamer; a writer/poet; a lindy-hopper; a technophile; and sometimes a musician. There are other boxes I could stuff myself in, but you get the idea.

This blog is a place for me to talk about those things that I am and that interest me, mainly libraries, fatherhood, and Olympia, but also anything else that strikes my fancy. My update schedule is, starting now, at least three times per week on a M-W-F schedule, with additional posts a possibility. We'll see how things go.

You can find me other places on the web, if you want to, like: facebook | twitter | tumblr | goodreads. I also have an old blog dating back to 2004, and a webcomic that I did with my friend Theo (I wrote, he drew), called La Casa.

I hope that you enjoy reading and that you'll comment every now and again so I know you're out there.

14Nov/10Off

Remembrance of Things Past

This blog is no longer updates, but serves as an archive for all posts from January 2004 - November 2009. Good times.

For my current projects, check out my website at ahniwa.com or my current blog at ahniwa.com/blog.