The Second Nine Months

Today Thalia turns nine months.

I had every expectation of writing a beautiful (but not sappy), engaging (but not long-winded), charming (but not flip), absolutely perfect (but not trying too hard) post about her. About how she’s now been breathing oxygen as long as she was sucking in amniotic fluid. About how much my life has changed in unimaginable and unimaginably wonderful ways. About how I never thought I’d love another human being so much that it could cause physical pain–not even Chachi. Not even Chachi when he played guitar.

Instead, here I am at home (i.e. my hotel room) completely spent after another fourteen-hour day at work.

I’m feeling utterly crappy for flying my family 6000 miles across the country so that I can see them for ten minutes each morning. I’m eating Baked Lays and Boursin for dinner because I can’t stand the thought of ordering room service for the eighth straight night. And I’m wondering how I can possibly plough through the exhaustion to generate any words remotely worthy of this occasion, let alone assembling those words into prose that won’t make me want to cut my hands off at the wrists and never write again.

Thalia, I can only assure you that something better is coming when you turn one.

Oh God, the Cats in the Cradle lyrics have entered my consciousness and that’s never a good thing.

So here is my promise to you: This will be not be another “I’ll get around to it,” like the New Year’s resolutions that never get written, the screenplay that never gets finished, the promised lunch dates with friends that never get made. You’re far too important to me. So like it or not, more effusive, embarrassing, overwritten essays about you than you can stand are in your future.

But you also have to know that the work I’m doing right now instead of writing about you–or watching you learn to clap, or feeding you new foods, or singing our little lullaby song as I tuck you in at night–is also all about you.

Please believe this. Because you need to help me believe it.

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