Sweetheart, you did so, so great! From the moment your water broke in the movie theater 70 hours ago to just now when our 8 lb., 11 oz. son finally arrived, you were the bravest, strongest, most beautiful woman in the whole maternity ward. And somehow not the loudest, even though the anesthesiologist who was supposed to administer your epidural couldn’t be found anywhere before that precious window for drugs closed. I am very, very proud of you!
Some articles I read online—after I discovered that this hospital doesn’t have a game room or a gym for guests—while you were in labor for just shy of three full days, mentioned a “push present.” Apparently this is an expensive token a husband might give his wife as a reward for suffering through the miracle of childbirth. Because I didn’t want to keep leaving your side and because I also didn’t find anything special enough in the hospital gift shop or Au Bon Pain, I realized that no mere bauble could compare to our little bundle of joy, which is a gift that you gave us both!
I mean, who needs diamonds when our son’s eyes sparkle so brightly? Why bother with a ruby when our little boy’s umbilicus pulses bright red? A multicolored opal would seem mundane next to our perfect child’s purple birthmark! And anyway, we’re probably not getting dressed up, spending time with other adults, or even leaving our house much in the next several years, so jewelry seems like a huge waste of money. And we are definitely going to need money according to the same articles I was reading while you were dilating, contracting, and threatening to kill me if I ever touched you again.
Do me a favor: Imagine that you’re at the supermarket, a playground, or a pediatrician’s office, and another mom comes up to you and gushes, “Oh, how absolutely precious!” Now, was she referring to a five-band white gold bangle bracelet on your wrist or our son latched on to your breast? When you post a photograph with the hashtags #blessed and #keepsake, is it a pic of pearl earrings or our perfect offspring? And if… well, I don’t know any other kinds of jewelry, but I’m sure you get my point.
So I just wanted to let you know what I was thinking and why I didn’t hand you a little blue box when the nurse took the baby away for his Apgar test and you fell right asleep. If you wake up before I get back to the room, don’t worry: I just ran out to Best Buy because their Blu-ray flash sale ends tonight.
Sent from my iPhone 4. Please pardon any typos.
Illustration by Mike Frank