Thursday, August 10, 2006

August 10, 1996

There's Max just minutes old 10 years ago today.

Tonight, at 7:04 p.m., it will be 10 years to the minute that my first son was born. There's nothing like it and you can't describe it. Back in January, I wrote a post all about Max. I thought I'd take a different approach today on his birthday.

There's a very interesting back-story to Max's arrival. Way back on September 22, 1992, when we were just dating, Chrisy gave me a gift. The occassion for the gift was the one year anniversary of me becoming a Christian. Believe it or not, Chrisy was bold enough to write the following on the gift: "Shenandoah, do not open until I go into labor with the birth of our first child." Yea, we both knew it, even then, that we would be together forever. That's actually pretty amazing considering we didn't start dating until August 3, 1992. (the photo at the left shows Max just a few days old)

Actually, Chrisy didn't make me wait until the birth of our first child to open that gift. Instead, on December 11, 1995, when I got home from college, Chrisy told me to watch something she had cued up on the television. It was the well-known scene from I Love Lucy wherein Lucy breaks the news to Ricky that they were expecting. That was how my wife broke the news to me. After that, she let me open the three-year-old gift. Inside was a T-shirt that I still have. My favorite character, the Tasmanian Devil is on it and it says, "Radical Dad!" She also gave me a Christmas tree ornament that I also still have. It says, "Dad-to-Be 1995" on it. I was only 26. Out of happiness, I cried.

Max's due date was August 3. He was one week late. August 10, 1996 was crazy. I'll certainly never forget that day. There was a huge blackout and all the signals were out across three cities as we tried to navigate to the hospital. In terms of not stressing, let's just say I definately was not exactly a Zen-master that first time around. Yea, I know some of you are saying, "What? Not you Doah, you're usually so calm, cool, collected, and mellow." Alas, it's true, I was in a panic.

Actually, what happened is we finally got to the hospital and they examed Chrisy and told her she wasn't actually in labor so they sent us away. Because the signals were out, it took us awhile to not even get half-way home. About then, things really kicked in. And, despite us thinking, "They just told us you're not ready," we turned around and went back. When we got there, Chrisy was breathing hard and in pain. The nurse instantly saw us and told Chrisy, "Calm down honey, you just left here." When the doctor checked her that time, she was fully dilated! I asked, "How far along is she now," and the doctor snapped, "Stand back, the baby's here and he's not happy!" Just minutes later I was officially a father. (the photo to left was taken on 10/20/96 at Max's parent-child dedication)

Childbirth makes me think about many people who don't believe in God, people I heard say things like, "How can there be a God when there's so much suffering in the world?" They might say, "Why would a God allow a 9/11 or let an innocent child in Iraq blow-up?" Yet, not many of the same people would look at a human being enter the world and say, "That's so amazing, there just must be a God." Why is it that some people hold God responsible for the negative, the tragic, but don't give him credit for the beautiful, the miracles? Well, I was there. There must be a God. Happy birthday son!

Here's a random one. This is Max and I with
Bruce Herschensohn. Remember this guy?
He ran against Barbara Boxer (for the Senate) in 1992 and lost.
Max was just about two weeks old in this picture.

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Blogger Tony said...

Great post Doah! Give Max a big birthday hug for me!!

5:45 PM  
Blogger Mike Pena said...

Happy b-day to Mr. Max! We have a gift for him, we'll get it to him next time we see him. Give me a hug from me too!

6:51 PM  

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