Okay, I'm going to stun Heather by posting here and hope that in her weakened condition she doesn't have a heart attack. I'm sure she has thought that I've given up on this blog. The truth is that I'm just not much good at correspondence.
First, let me get a little shameless self-promotion out of the way. Those who have read recent posts here know all about the derbies at shirt.woot.com. We've been trying our hand at these contests for just over a month now with varying degrees of non-success (there are three winners out of often more than 300 entries). This week could be different. We now have a shirt in the competition that stands a decent chance of making at least that vaunted top 3! Check it out, and if you've ever bought anything from Woot!, we sure would appreciate the votes.
Okay, now that that is out of the way...
I've really been meaning to post on here for some time, but I never seemed to have the time. I don't really have the time now, either, but I'm stealing some time from the work I have to finish so I can write this, because I need to. It's mothers' day and I have some deep thoughts on my mind.
A little over two years ago I married Heather. That day was, up until that point, the happiest day of my life, marred only by the fact that my own mother was unable to be there, at least not in mortality.
While I'm on that subject, let me tell you a little about my mother. She was one of those popular, very pretty girls who didn't really care that she was popular or was never too concerned that she was pretty. My father met her while on his mission in the New England States Mission (yeah, that long ago). His companion had determined that he would find her and date her after the mission, and as luck would have it, by that time she had moved to Utah. She only had eyes, however, for my dad, much to his bewilderment (and, ultimately, delight).
Mom was the kind of person who was always collecting strays. Not animals, really (though we took in our share of those), but people. My sister's friend was thrown out of her house, so my mother took her in. She became like a member of the family. For a few years we were a foster family for an indian girl named Andrea, who was featured at one point on the cover of the New Era. It didn't seem to matter what the issue was. My mother was always willing to help if she was able.
My mom would also "remember" sounds - like a dog's bark - from books she read.
She read often.
Mom pretended to much more innocence than she truly had, insisting that "making whoopee" simply meant having fun. One of her favorite movies was Thoroughly Modern Millie, the cleanest movie about sex you'll ever see.
Four and a half years ago my mother passed away, survived by her husband and eleven of her thirteen children. It saddens me that my wife and children will not know her in this life. She would love them.
Speaking of which, it was a little more than a year ago that Felix was born. I can't honestly say that it was a joyous occasion. I was mostly stunned, and there was lots of blood and...stuff. The joy came later. As I sit here again in the hospital with him, rocking him to sleep - for the fifth time tonight - I'm still amazed that I am a father.
You see, I've wanted this my whole life, even though I've never really understood it until now. Being a father is by turns overwhelming, exhausting, joyful, fun, and downright difficult.
Even so, that's not the part of this whole deal I looked forward to the most. The thing that I wanted most of all, the thing that I longed for, the thing that caused my heart to ache for lack of it, was a companion. The very idea of having someone to share the journey with, someone who wanted to be with me, someone who would share my hopes and dreams, that seemed like heaven to me. Much like heaven, though, It always seemed out of reach, like something you hope for in some undefined future time, and it seems too good for you to ever be worthy of it.
Now that I'm here I can hardly believe it. That's not to say that it's all like a dream. It's not always easy. There are health problems and money problems. Some days we struggle just to get along with each other. It's no fantasy.
Except that it is.
There is no place that I would rather be than here in this hospital with my son. There is no one that I would rather share these days with than my wife Heather. It's adventure like none other.
Anyway, this Mothers' Day I just wanted to let Heather know that I love her. I love her for her independent spirit. I love her for her intelligence and her life experiences. I love her for her perfect nose with its triangular nostrils! I love her for her attitudes on life. I love her for her enthusiasm for people and for life. I love her for her willingness to help friends and family in need.
Mostly, however, I love her for her willingness to throw her lot in with mine, for the time we share together, for being there.
A little over two years ago I married Heather.
A little over a year ago our son was born.
Less than a year from now we'll have another child.
My little family is growing, and I couldn't be happier.