Skin to Skeleton

He’s almost here.

He could come, literally, any day now.

My child. My son.

Do you want to know the first time I felt like a father? It wasn’t when I bought that knife, or felt him kick, or even when I saw him in his first ultrasound. It happened over a year ago, before Paint was pregnant the first time. I was still on the fence about having a child. I was scared that it would break our relationship. There aren’t a lot of husbands and wives in the media that have children and still seem to like
each other. There certainly aren’t any that love each other the way Paint and I do.

Knowing that, I’ve always felt like maybe the rules were somehow… different for us. Yes, everything about who we are and how we interact works amazingly well, but what if there’s a catch? What if there’s a hidden self destruct button that could bring this relationship we’ve spent years constructing crashing down around

I got it in my head that if that button exists, it will almost certainly be a child that pushes it. You don’t have to look hard to find couples that are worse off because of having children. People have kids, and suddenly their marriage isn’t what it used to be. They have less time for one another. They have less interest in one another. They have less patience with one another. And then it’s only a matter of time. Our
decision to not have kids was an easy one to make because Paint was everything and all I needed.

When I shared my thoughts with Paint, she told me that adding a child to our lives didn’t mean there would be less love to go around; there would be more.

I fell asleep thinking about her words. When I opened my eyes, I was in a darkened room. In the center was a blanket with a sleeping infant lying on it. Even as I approached, I knew the truth: It was my son. It was the first time I had ever been able to see him as more than an abstract concept. He had a form. He had a face. I sat beside him and laid my palm on his back. I watched it rise and fall with his breath and felt something I had never felt before.

He was mine. But more than that. He was also a piece of me and I loved him so much. In that moment, I wanted everything for him. I wanted to give him the entire world. I wanted him to have every opportunity. I wanted him to be exactly who he was supposed to be– nothing more and nothing less.

My hope became tangible. I closed my eyes and envisioned it flowing from me, pouring over my hand and onto him like a second skin. I wanted it to make him indestructible. I wanted it to make him fly.

In the end, I settled for wrapping my arms around him and hoping that I would be enough.

My eyes snapped open. I could still smell him, lingering somewhere in my subconscious. I realized what I had just experienced wasn’t so much a dream as it was a vision of the future. It was a foregone conclusion: I was already a father.

Paint wasn’t pregnant yet, but I knew that I had been chosen. From somewhere Out There, I had been seen and selected.

That’s why the miscarriage had been so devastating. But, ironically, on this side of things that’s why it feels like a non-event. We believe that the soul that chose us then, is the same soul that resides in Paint’s belly. It just needed more time. That’s okay. Pregnancy has taught Paint and I how to wait.

We waited for the heartache to subside.
We waited to try again.
We waited for her to become pregnant.
We waited for it to stick.
We waited for him to hit the “safe zone”.
We waited for him to get big and strong.
And now? Right now, we’re waiting for him to decide he’s ready to join us out here.

Every step has felt like the hardest part. This one is no different. It’s important to us to do this whole thing naturally, so we’re working on his time table, not ours. It could be hours. It could be weeks. Right now, in this final phase of cessation, I’m not scared. I’m not worried. From skin to skeleton, all I feel is gratitude that the universe saw it fit to pair me with this woman and this boy. I’m so excited to see what we can create together.


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