At The Dinner Date Husband Was In Disbelief When Wife Reveals This.

Story by Michael T. Powers (Author)

Kristi has been extremely creative in how she tells me I am going to be a father. When she knew she was pregnant with our first son, Caleb, she took me to a nice restaurant for dinner. At the end of our delicious meal, the waitress handed me the bill and a sealed envelope. She told me it was from someone in the restaurant. I looked around, searching for a familiar face, but found none. I opened it and read the typed message. In the mean time, all the employees, including the chefs from the kitchen, started moving closer to our table.

The message read, “Michael, this is to inform you that you will be changing the kitty litter for the next nine months. In other words, congratulations, you are going to be a father!”

I looked across the table at my beloved wife with disbelief on my face. “How did this happen!” flashed through my head. I remembered the talk my father had with me long ago, so I knew how it happened, but I wanted to know HOW this had happened! I started bawling like a baby. I had wanted to have children all seven years of our marriage, but Kristi wanted to wait. This was not something we had planned, and I wasn’t emotionally ready for it. There I sat, tears streaming down my face, surrounded by my now crying wife, a bunch of sobbing waitresses, and a couple of chefs who went back into the kitchen in a suspicious hurry.

The next eight months were filled with anticipation and moments of wonder. I remember hearing the sound of my baby’s heartbeat. Nothing prepares a man for the moment he hears his child’s heartbeat for the first time. It was nothing like I expected. The chugging that came through the speakers sounded just like a train to me. I know that doesn’t sound too exciting or romantic, but to me it was incredible.

I remember watching my wife’s tummy grow, longing for the day when I would be able to feel Caleb moving inside of her. We would sit for long periods of time, my hands pressed gently against her abdomen, waiting for Caleb to move, but he wouldn’t. I would pray that God would give him the hiccups just so I could feel my son through the thin that protected him from the outside world.

And then miraculously he moved and I felt him for the first time! I waited breathlessly for him to move again, not believing that it actually happened. I can’t even imagine what it must have felt like for Kristi to sense her offspring moving within her.

As I waited for the day of his birth, I would have dreams of seeing him for the first time; intensely vivid dreams of a baby’s face that would stay with me long after sleep ended. Looking back now, I am amazed at how long, and how short, nine months can be.

We never did get to rush off to the hospital like on TV because Caleb decided he liked it too much inside the womb. After being three weeks overdue, the doctors decided to induce labor, so there we sat in the hospital waiting for something to happen. Kristi wanted a CD player in the room so she could listen to relaxing music as she went through the huffing, puffing, and pushing. I, however, thought it would be funny to put in a CD by Salt-N-Peppa and play their song, “Push It,” so as soon as I was sufficiently bored with waiting, I turned the CD player on and out blasted: “PUSH IT! PUSH IT GOOD!”

I was so proud of my little joke.

When I looked up, I saw Kristi and her mom giving me the death stare. Not even a crack of a smile. I was grinning from ear to ear, but realized that if I wanted to be a part of this miracle and stay in the room, I had better turn it off in a hurry and put on some soothing music. To this day they don’t think it was funny, while I am still laughing out loud as I write this. In their defense, Kristi tells me that the music was so loud that they couldn’t make out the words.

Labor finally set in — twenty hours of it. At the end of the twenty hours, Caleb’s head was too big for the birth canal, and the doctor told us he would have to do a C-Section. At this point I was a little worried, but trusted that God and the doctors knew what they were doing.

Then it finally happened! I was sitting at the head of the operating table, holding Kristi’s hand, when the doctor said, “We have a healthy baby boy.” All throughout surgery, I was afraid to stand up so that I could see what was going on. I figured the doctors and nurses would yell at me and say, “Boy, what do you think you are doing?! You sit back down now!” However when I heard the doctor say that he could see the baby, I didn’t care if they threw a scalpel at me; I was going to look at my child.

There he was! I could almost hear the angels singing as my precious baby boy was brought into the world. He was perfect in every way, and the tears began to fall. “Oh Kristi! He’s beautiful!” was all I could stammer.

I was in the “new father fog.”

In reality, Caleb looked terrible. His skin color changed about four times in the first five minutes, and I wouldn’t have been surprised to be on the cover of the National Enquirer: “Reptile Boy Born in Wisconsin! Man fathers chameleon in real life X-Files episode!” His hands and feet were extremely wrinkled, like he had been in the pool too long, and all kinds of bodily secretions were oozing from his pores.

Everything else seemed fine though. Except for THE TWO HEADS! Yes, my boy had two heads, and that was the first thing Kristi noticed when the nurse handed Caleb to her for the first time. She told me later that she was thoroughly convinced that she had married a psycho. “My husband called this thing beautiful?”

Because Caleb went through twenty hours of labor, but had been too big to fit through the birth canal, it was obvious where his head had been stuck all that time. It had swollen up like a balloon in two different places, and it really did look like he had two heads. Being the proud father, I figured that was God’s way of storing all the brain matter he inherited from me. The swelling did go down in a few days, but Caleb wasn’t looking his best for the first few weeks.

It is amazing, though, how being a new father blinded me to certain realities. I kept telling everyone how beautiful he was. It wasn’t until a year or so later, after looking at photos, that I realized Caleb had looked like a swollen two-headed lizard that had been in the water for too long. To me though, he was the most beautiful creation that had ever appeared on the earth.

Fatherhood. You gotta love it!

From the book: “Heart Touchers” by Michael T. Powers
Copyright © 2000 by Michael T. Powers, All rights reserved

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