The Paternal Connection

It feels like we are having a lot more sad conversations. As R’s time in the military comes to an end, he realizes how much he has missed of our kids’ lives.

First time a baby rolls over. First words. First steps. First days of school. All days of school. Birthdays. Halloweens. Christmases.

All for what?

For a pension? For financial stability? Trust me. It will help but it does not promise stability.

Injured in a war that many have seemed to forget about. Aches and pains that go unreported to doctors, to a spouse, to bosses. And for what? Pride? Shame? Guilt?

There is a lot going through our minds now. Too much to write about. Most too personal to publish.

A few nights ago, we both had a weak moment.

“I will never get those days back,” he said.

“I know,” I said because what else could I say? “We could have another baby.”

That statement usually is followed by a few choice words from R and a definite NO. But this time was different.

“We could.”

Come again?

“I never got to see them as babies. I never got to see them grow up… hello?”

“I’m still here,” I said. “Just a bit shocked. I have always joked about having another one and you’ve always said no.”

“I know but they’re all grown up now. And I missed everything.”

No. You haven’t. We talked more about it and realized that while bringing another life into this world that was both him and me would be amazing and wonderful, it would also be for the wrong reasons.

[Don’t get me wrong. If it happens, it happens. But with a vasectomy? Don’t hold your breath. He would be so mad if he were reading this right now but if he doesn’t say anything for a few weeks, I’ll post about the day of his vasectomy. Hilarious story about that day.]

A baby would take up his time that would probably be better spent on the kids who haven’t had it, if that makes any sense. A year from now, R will prepare to move home and I believe with my whole heart that when he moves home, it was supposed to be the time he moves home. Our kids will overwhelm him at first. Shoot, everything will overwhelm him at first.

But I welcome it. I welcome the tough transition. I welcome the awkward times we will have together, getting used to each other full-time again. I welcome making mistakes and planning dinners. I welcome it all because I’m sure that in a parallel universe I had nothing.

In this universe I have everything.

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