Thursday, August 7, 2008

All About Mommy

There’s a really great feeling I get watching somebody do the exact thing they’re supposed to be doing in life. I think it’s why I love going to see good, live music so much. There’s just something fulfilling about watching the performer do the one thing they were meant to be doing and sharing it with everyone. Anybody who knows me knows that I’m not a huge sports fan; but even I can’t help but be impressed watching someone like Tiger Woods in action. There’s a feeling of satisfaction, a feeling of pride for another person that comes up in me when I get to enjoy someone doing the thing they were made to do.

That's the same feeling I’ve had for the past month watching Angie be a Mom. From the second Patrick was brought into this world, Angie has cared for him and bonded with him in ways I didn’t really know were possible and it's become more and more evident that this is exactly what she was meant to do. Watching the two of them interact with each other has been amazing. Angie has an incredible instinct about motherhood and about Patrick’s needs and wants. So much of being a Mom has come effortlessly to her; and the things that still take figuring out, she's been patient and persistent with. Patrick is never more at ease than when Angie is around. The sound of her voice or even just the scent of her close by calms and comforts him almost instantly.

Not that there’s such a thing as an “easy labor” or “easy childbirth” but Angie’s was definitely NOT easy. It was very long (23 hours) and slow and done on very little sleep since it started at night. I don’t think I’ve ever been more proud than I was watching Angie go through labor and, especially, delivery (and believe me, there’s a lot to be proud of when you’re married to her). She honestly made the whole thing look easy. Every step of it seemed to come naturally to her and she rolled with the punches the entire way no matter how fast or hard they came. She was cooperative with every nurse or doctor that came in the room no matter how much pain she was in and even when we lost Patrick’s heartbeat for several minutes (that felt like years) towards the end, she stayed calm and just tried to do what she was asked to do by the nurses. One particularly telling moment was the morning of the day Patrick was born when the doctor came in to check on Angie. He had told her this was going to take longer than originally expected and to plan on it being late afternoon before the baby was born (as opposed to the original mid-morning prediction). Angie was understandably not thrilled to hear the news. But while the doctor was walking out of the room and Angie was in the middle of a huge and uncomfortable contraction, she still managed to thank the doctor and wish him a good rest of his day. The doctor actually came back in the room to tell Angie how sweet she was that even at that moment she was still thinking of someone else and being kind.

Before having kids, I didn't know what pregnancy and parenthood would mean for our relationship. I knew the hectic schedule and the division of attention would affect both our amount and quality of time together somehow; but because we weren't yet in the situation I didn't know what it would end up translating into for us. We had concerns, as I think most about-to-be-parents do, about growing further apart or having to divide our affections. I had heard a hundred horror stories of pregnant women with mood swings that would tilt the earth off its axis and was naturally curious how Angie would react. Not surprisingly, she reacted to pregnancy the same way she reacts to most things in life: calmly, selflessly and optimistic. It was great watching Angie actually enjoy being pregnant. And she couldn't have been more beautiful. As for our relationship now, Patrick being born has not only given us both a completely new kind of love that we feel for him, but also a new appreciation, love and respect for each other. We enjoy our time together more than ever and have so much fun just playing with him and sitting together watching him.

Usually when I post here, I run it by Angie first to make sure the post makes sense, doesn't have any huge errors I’m overlooking and has the pictures she wants in it. But, I won’t be running this one by her because I know she would tell me not to post it out of modesty and humility. So, if you see any mistakes in here, that’s why. Sorry this post is even wordier than my usual but, believe me, I could have gone on much longer. Thanks for reading all the way to the end if you did. And now I’m going to go be with Angie and Patrick and watch them both do what they do best – love each other.


Amy Jacobs said...

Well Toby, you made me cry. I think you both were meant to be parents. You are both laid back and easy going which is perfect for the craziness that ensues when there is a newborn in the picture. Thank you for loving my best friend so perfectly. Nothing makes me happier than seeing you guys as a happy (and extremely cute) little family. Love you guys!

Amanda said...

Awe that was sooooo touching. Toby you made me cry. You are both truly WONDERFUL parents!!!! Being able to watch you and Ang interact with Patrick last week was so amazing. I am so happy I got to be with you guys. Thanks for this loving post.
Love, Auntie Mandie

joflow said...

...and so it came to pass, that all my snarky and hilarious wit was thusly slain and laid out for all humanity to see, as the great behemoth "Emotion" ripped my well-hidden heart directly from my unbelievably-muscled ribcage and held it, still pulsing, up to the light for all to see, whimpering and simpering like a child without their toy. And made me look like a crybaby little girl. THANKS A LOT.

ALSO, a few webnotes:

1. The checkbox that says "Email follow-up comments to:" doesn't work.

2. All the text for this post is black, in stark contrast to the light-green used in all the others. If you're going to write in another program and then cut-and-paste, at least do us the solid of checking your HTML before posting. COME ON!

Toby said...

@joflow -

Solid done. Text has been changed to match the rest of the posts.

As for the 'email follow-up comments'; I have no control over that (at least, that I know of). Email me "offline" and be a little more descriptive about what doesn't work.

Thanks to everybody for your comments and kind words!

Anonymous said...

Toby you are an incredible man and I am so happy that you and Angie found eachother and that your love continues to grow stronger. I know that you were both meant to be parents and I am so glad that that has finally happened. I love you guys!

Anonymous said...

It is such a gift to be able to see you and Angie share in the joy of being Patrick's parents. Toby you have such a beautiful way of loving and appreciating my sister. I love you all dearly!

Anonymous said...

Toby I sit here in awe with a tear in my eye. Words are not coming to me that could properly express my feelings right now. I am so glad God has bless us with you in our family. Patrick is a very lucky young man to have such loving and caring parents. Your love is an example for us all to see amd witness.