It was 5:00 PM and I was alone at work, after hours in my cubicle, but I was not working. Instead, I was sitting in front of my computer sulking with my arms crossed, pissed off at God, my wife and the world. I mean I was fuming pissed off. “Why would you put this on me now?”. “Why?!”
You see, I had just received a phone call from my wife, If you can call it a phone call. I answered and the only words she spoke were “I think I’m pregnant” and then hung up. I sat there frozen with my mouth wide open and phone receiver still in one hand.
“What did she just say?”. “Did she say she was pregnant?”
Yep, she hung up. She knew what my reaction would be to the news and she wanted me to stew on it for a while. Looking back it was pretty funny and kind of cute.
I was going to get nothing done now. I called her back and asked the typical stupid questions:
“How did this happen?”
“Did you take a test?”
“Yeah, about 6”
“How do you know it’s not wrong?”
“Kerry took one too and it was a different result” Kerry is her best friend and our roommate. Kerry was not pregnant.
I was upset to the rafters and accused her of sabotaging her birth control to get pregnant. Yeah, I was a jerk and I handled the news like a selfish little baby. It was not like I did not want to become a father, I just did not want to become one in the next 9 months. I said to myself, “I am not ready for this, I have plans, there is still more to do”. Let me add, however, to this day my lovely bride still has not confirmed nor denied she had sabotaged her pregnancy. Oh the chickens are coming home to roost, Katherine Irene Lucero. HA HA.
I got in my car and drove home. It was a 20 minute drive to our house and it gave me time to think about everything including my behavior. By the time I pulled up to the driveway, anger had given way to wonder.
“Wow, this is all going to happen.”
Yeah it was going to happen regardless of how angry I got our how hard I pounded on the ground and screamed to the heavens. I was going to be a father.
I found her in our bedroom, lying on the bed looking very solemn. It was obvious she was scared and my reaction on the phone offered her no comfort. In that time period from our phone call to now she must have felt very alone and that was my doing. She looked at me with large tears in her eyes and said, “I don’t know how to be a mother”.
I put my arms around her and asked these questions.
“Do you know how to make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches?”
“Do you know how to bake cookies?”
“Do you know how to put bandaids on booboos?
“Do you know how to read bedtime stories?”
“Do you know how to give hugs and kisses?”
“Then you know how to be a mom and you are going to be the best.”
I walked out of our bedroom to the living room where my buddy Malvin, our other roommate, was sitting and I announced loudly, “I AM GOING TO BE A DAD!”
Everyday since that moment, I have announced loudly that I am a dad.
Today, that “interruption of my plans” just walked out of my house to live in his dorm at college. The anger and irritation I experienced, at first hearing of his coming, pales in comparison to the complete heartbreak and sadness I am experiencing at his leaving. Being a dad means change is constant, for the better, although that change is not always welcomed. I am not ready for this, I had plans, there is still more to do.
When youth sports were over, my role went from coach to spectator. Now, in life, it is time again for me to slowly walk off the field and take my seat in the stands. I will forever thank God for ignoring those plans of mine and presenting His to me, in all its glory and joy.