Sunday, August 30, 2009

Baby to Parent, My Journey

I am a 28-year old stay at home dad who works full-time in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. It's a delicate balancing act for sure, but I wouldn't have it any other way! Inspired by a post from MckMama, I decided to do a little history on Khordaddy.

In spring of 1981, I was the first born of an eventual 3 sons. Ronald Reagan is in his first year as President, and the first IBM PC is introduced.

In winter of 1983, my second brother is born. I meet him for the first time in the hospital and manage to poke him in the eye. I still remember this, it is one of my earliest memories. I can even still remember walking up to the side of my mom's hospital bed and having my dad lift me up there to sit with my mom and new baby brother.

We move into our new house in 1985, and live there for the next 12 years. The wreck of the R.M.S. Titanic is located this year.

My third and youngest brother was born in 1986. I am attending Kindergarten at a private Christian school.

In 1987 I start my heavy addiction to G.I Joes. Eventually I collect over 60 of the action figures. I also start first grade. I have my first crush, Carrie, and manage to chase her all across the playground until I catch her, pin her on the ground, and plant a big smooch on her back.

In the 4th grade, I start wearing glasses. I was one of the few that thought it was cool to wear glasses. Man, could I see the chalkboard now! I also learn the truth about the jolly red man from the north.

In 5th grade I am educated about the birds and the bees. A repulsive idea to me at the time.

In the 7th grade, at age 13, I get braces. I also get some mega contraption that resembles a retainer on steroids to help bring back my overbite. It works wonders, but makes me feel like a pro football player 24/7 with that giant mouthpiece.

At 14, I start high school and also start attending youth group at my church for the first time. I also get contacts.

Age 16 brings a handful of events. I am baptised and devote my life to Christ, I get my driver's license, and my dad gets a job promotion, in which we must move across state. Two years of high school left.

I spent the better half of my junior year of high school grounded, because I pretty much am fed up with parental authority. I count my blessings my parents loved me enough to keep me from heading further down a rebellious path.

Senior year comes, 12th grade, and I already have enough credits to graduate. I elect to stay in my senior year. I get my first girlfriend, and the relationship lasts 9 months until I have to go to college. I was a senior, she was a freshman. Dating younger women is a trend that would continue. We move back to our hometown after another job transfer for my dad.

First year of college I accumulate a whopping GPA of 0.9. Poor study habits in high school and staying up late with friends left me ill-prepared for the dedication college studyiung takes. I did not party, drink or do anything of the sort, but I just half-assed my way through that first semester. After finals, I come home and spend the next semester there.

The year 2000 starts and I meet my second girlfriend, who I date for a year and a half. During this time we share the same classes and go to the same church. Both still immature in terms of relationships, we eventually go our separate ways. A very difficult break-up that would forever change my perception on how I should act in a relationship. More maturity eventually evolves from this.

Late 2000, I head back to college to continue my education. I manage to bring my GPA up to a 1.1. I again come home after the semester and do not return. On academic probation, I do not attend this college again.

2001 comes and I am attending community college working towards a networking degree. 9/11 happens and we are sent home, classes are cancelled. My cousin was in relative proximity to the World Trade Center, but was safe and unharmed.

In late 2002 I start working in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at the hospital my mom works at. She is an NICU nurse. So yes, I work with my mom. I change my degree from networking to nursing. I work hard at school and raise my GPA to a 3.2.

In 2004, fed up with the dating scene, I try online dating, with great results. Meet my third girlfriend, a teacher. We mutually agree to split up after 6 months realizing we had grown as far as we could together. We stay in contact as friends until we are both married, at which point we both agree to continue our separate journeys out of touch.

In October of 2005, I meet the woman of my dreams, Brittany, via Yes, it works. As with most girls it seems, her friends put her on match after a nasty break-up, and I of course, luckily found her. On the last day before my account expired, I figured I'd try one last time to see if there were any perfect girls out there. To my amazement, I found Brittany, and sent her an email. Being so beautiful, I was sure she wouldn't even give me a second look. I was wrong. When I received her email in reply, I was so excited. We eventually went out on a date and I knew it was meant to be from the moment I saw her.

Strangely enough, the medical director (a neonatologist) of my unit has a daughter who is best friends with my wife's sister. Strange how small the world can be.

In early 2006 we moved in together after only 3 months of dating. Just before our 1 year anniversary, I asked Brittany to marry me. She, of course, said yes! School is still a struggle for me, though I have all my pre-requisites for nursing school nearly completed. Just a few more labs to go.

June 2007, at the age of 26, I marry my beautiful wife, Brittany, age 22. We honeymoon in the Caribbean on a cruise.

In December of 2007, we find out we are pregnant. Brittany surprises me with the info by taking me to the restaurant we ate at on our first date, Friday's. She presents me with a glasses case, which I have no idea what to expect. I open it up and inside is a digital thermometer. Only it's not a thermometer (such is my now-medical way of thinking). It's actually a positive pregnancy test with a note telling me how I will be just as great of a father as I am a husband. I am speechless and shocked. I keep asking Brit if she is joking. I want to jump and shout and cheer with joy, but being in a restaurant, I control myself. I am ecstatic.

Late February 2008 we purchase our first home. An absolute steal during the housing recession, we snatch up a 2700 sq. foot, 4-bedroom, 2.5 bath house built in 2004 for dirt cheap. Having gone past foreclosure, we purchased the house as a HUD home (US Dept. of Housing and Urban Development owned).

September 2008 our baby girl is born at 6 pounds 15.2 ounces. 40 weeks and full-term, she is a beautiful baby! Both sets of grandparents are at the hospital when Brit delivers. They are allowed to come in to see mom and baby about 30 minutes after delivery.

With a good job in the NICU, but now not attending school, I am at a crossroads on where to go from here. Finish with nursing, or take another medical related job such as billing and coding, or medical transcription in order to stay at home with our baby girl. Tough choices.

Brit works full-time during the week, and I stay home to watch the baby, still working my full-time NICU job. I couldn't imagine a more perfect life right now!

Keep this going and post how YOU got to where you are now!

1 comment:

Kari said...

Great to read - just wondering if I'd remember enough details to do the same. You and your mom do a great thing. Many of my friends have had their kids in the NICU and it saved their baby's lives...