Who could really doubt that I would call you that?
We - your mother and I - were out this past weekend and I noted that I wasn't sure what particular flavour of "geek" was my top-note. Jodie wasted no time in pointing out that the unique element of my email address is "jedischooldropout." So should it be any kind of question that I should pick "padawan" as a term of endearment? Hey... at least I never (seriously) suggested that it should be your actual name.
My Dad called me "my boy" - fairly easy, that one. He called my sister "princess" - rather common, don't you think? But they worked for him, and we responded. That is what is important. They meant something between us, even if I was to grow up to see them as rather quaint. I smile in spite of myself when he uses them today. I am totally prepared for you shaking your head at my choice and thinking "gawd, Dad - that stupid turn of the century mythology of yours is so lame!"
I built your crib and stroller this past weekend. It didn't make your arrival seem any more real - we passed the zenith of that ages ago when I first saw your "face" on ultra-sound (and so I built my own mythology of our relationship). What it did do is hammer home the imminent nature of your arrival. As unlikely as it still is, we are realistically in the range where you could arrive any day. It is far more likely that you'll show up in at least a few more weeks, maybe even a month... but the chances beyond that point are diminishingly small.
Tomorrow morning I'm going to go be told how that is going to "go down." Of course they can only be approximate, and even my interpretation of that generalization is likely to be abjectly wrong. All the effort in the world to not put expectations on what that day is going to be like, how it is going to play out, is futile. I can't help but imagine, at the very least, the tiniest details. Little things that Jodie and I have discussed....
"Do you want to cut the umbilical cord?"
"Yeah sure. I don't put any sort of higher spiritual connection upon it, but how often am I going to get to perform major surgery?"
But who knows what the moment could bring? Maybe you could follow in your old-man's shoes and demand a c-section... in which case I'm not going to be in the room even if they would invite me - which they won't. I'm okay with blood, but the stuff that nature keeps on the other side of the skin-barrier on a daily basis... yeah, I don't need to see that.
The last ten days or so we've spent a fair bit of time squeezing in the last bits of "being social" before "normal life" disappears completely... but I've been thinking today that normal life evaporated ages ago. What is coming is the new normal. The normal with you in it. And by now it is almost inevitable that I am in a holding pattern. We are just waiting. Waiting for you to come.
That kind of began two weeks ago. We spent six weeks doing a lot of running around. We went to London for Demetri and Fionuala's wedding. Jodie took a detour to Belfast to visit Lynn and Phil. After the wedding we went to Amsterdam. Once we returned to Canada I had mere days before heading to Mississauga for a film festival, and upon returning from there there was little turn around before we went to Kelowna for the World Premiere (yeah yeah - I've dealt with that contradiction elsewhere). We were there for the better part of a week before coming home, and a by the next weekend we were heading back to the interior, to Logan Lake for Jodie's birthday....
Coming back from Logan Lake was wrought with (erm...) pregnant meaning. After weeks of running around the world, country and province - each time the circle getting closer and closer to home, it was the unspoken reality that we were heading home to have a baby.
We deflected that with a series of dinners with friends. Almost as if we were saying "hey, it's been good... we'll see you on the other side." Tonight I went to what was almost certainly my last Skeptics in the Pub meeting for a few months.
From here out, virtually every appointment is prefaced (at least implicitly) by "we may have to cancel as we might be brand new parents by then and be up to our ears in a learning curve that we could not imagine."
I'm as ready as I'm going to be... which is to say, "not at all, but trying hard." And what is weirdest of all to me... you have yet to breathe your first breath out here but beyond my comprehension, I already love you. I don't know for certain that you are a girl. I've only ever felt you through your mother's skin. I don't know if you have blue-eyes or brown... but you already have made me smile and you've already made me cry.
It seems like you already have your job down pat.
See you soon, Little Jedi.