On Fathers, Sons and Foosball

Foosballer

One of my fondest memories was playing games with my dad in the evenings after work. Many summer nights, we’d play catch in the backyard, but if the weather didn’t cooperate, we’d often head to the basement and play ping pong. Now, nobody wins in a game of catch. Ping pong, on the other hand is a different story. My dad taught me how to lose graciously for many years. When I finally did beat him it was the best feeling in the world.

Last month, I had the opportunity to pick up a used foosball table from a friend who was about to move. My dad came over and helped me put it together and we played a few games for old times sake. I’m still working on teaching Benjamin good sportsmanship — right now he just cries like a baby when I demolish him 10-0. But more than anything, I’m looking forward to the time when he beats me at my own game.

I just hope it isn’t too soon.

Sweet Dreams Are Made Of This


As most of you know, Bob is known for having active dreams. You guys have heard me tell you about him looking for gnomes under the bed, mice along the headboard and kicking me out of bed to go get the paper. Now with Ben, his dreams have become all about the baby or the subject of babies. Let me just tell you a few of them.

Dream #1: Bob wakes up, freaked out. Why? Because apparently we had triplets and they were sleeping in bed with us and he rolled over one of them.

Dream #2: Bob wakes up, freaked out. He’s fumbling around in the sheets frantically. I wake up after only 15 minutes of sleep to him asking me, “Where’s the baby? Where’s the baby?” Apparently, he was holding the baby and lost him in the bed.

Dream #3: After feeding Ben, I go back to bed and tug on the comforter because Bob has it all bunched up. He holds on to the comforter in a tight grip and won’t let go.

Bob: “Stop pulling on the baby!”
Jen: “I’m not pulling on the baby! Wake up!”
Bob: “Stop pulling on the baby!” He tugs harder.
Jen: “Wake up!” I shake him awake.
Bob: He sits up, looks around, confused. “What happened to the baby?”
Jen: “You never had the baby.”
Bob: “What happened to the baby?”
Jen: Annoyed. “Wake up, you never had the baby.”
Bob: “Oh, okay.” He lays back down. 30 seconds later, “Seriously, what happened to the baby?”
Jen: Sigh. I give up and go to sleep.

Besides the dreams, Bob also is very confused and discombobulated whenever you wake him up to tend to Ben. It is pretty hilarious. I’ll wake him up and he’ll ask me such crazy and random things. Or he’ll pop up out of bed and walk away without the baby. Or he’ll just sit up, look at me and then lay back to to go to sleep. After 8 weeks of Ben, he still can’t wake up properly.

I do have to say one thing about all of this, Bob’s antics do add some comic relief to the late night feedings.

A Day in the Life of a New Mom

The Family
First of all, I’m still weirded it out that I am the mother of a human being. Of course, I’m still mama to Kuma but I can’t just leave Ben at home unattended while I go see a movie. Totally different life now and I’m slowly adjusting.

I’m sure people who don’t have little ones at home wonder, “What does Jen do all day?” Well, let me give you a peek into my exciting world.

Early Morning (between 6-8am): He wakes up, I feed him. I put him back down to sleep. He then proceeds to wake up 15-30 minutes later. Bob gets him, changes him, pacifies him and tries to get him back to sleep. He is the one who gets him because I’m ready to throw myself out the window if I don’t get some sleep. Of course, nothing soothes him so I take him and he sleeps in bed with me.

Rockin' Out in the Bouncer
Morning (between 8-11am): He wakes up, I feed him and change him. He is now awake and is looking around. I have just enough time to put my contacts in and change, maybe go to the bathroom. We go downstairs and I try to talk to him but really, what do you talk about to someone who doesn’t understand you or answers you? I put him in his bouncer seat as I find something quick to eat. Then he starts getting fussy.

The Hottest Fashion Trend of Fall 2011
I put him in the ring sling and wear him around the house like an accessory. It knocks him out.

In Jail.
Noon to early afternoon (between 12-3pm): He wakes up, I feed him and change him. He goes back to sleep. I sit on the couch, grateful that my arms aren’t full of baby at the moment. I don’t have the energy to clean the house. This is also the time where I would scrounge for something substantial to eat. Cheez-Its, probably.

Peaceful Sleep
Afternoon (between 3-6pm): He wakes up, I feed him and change him. I try to keep him up because I would rather he sleep at night than during the day. But that doesn’t seem to work. He falls back asleep. The little shit. I start putzing around the house, trying to see if I can accomplish anything. I make lists that I don’t cross off, I start to clean a table and get distracted. Your brain doesn’t seem to function very well when it’s consumed by baby.

Wide Awake
Early Evening (between 6-9pm): Bob is home. Ben wakes up, I feed him, Bob changes him. Now the night shift has started in which Bob will take care of the diaper changes while I take care of the feedings. This also begins his fussy period where nothing makes him happy unless it’s mama that holds him. He fusses when grandma holds him, he fusses when daddy holds him. He doesn’t fuss as much when mommy holds him. I do get to eat dinner though because my mom cooks it for me most nights. It’s very nice.

Evening (between 9pm-12am): We start his nighttime routine in which I feed him in low lighting, we don’t interact with him that much, Bob changes him and soothes him to sleep. I am finally able to take a shower, wash my face, brush my teeth and settle down to go to bed because I know I’m on the graveyard shift with him.

Dead of Night (between 12-6am): He wakes up, I feed him and change him. I don’t make eye contact with him. I swaddle him, turn on the white noise machine and then try to rock him back to sleep. Sometimes it’ll take 15 minutes for him to fall asleep, sometimes 45 minutes. Either way, I’m thinking in my head, “Go the fuck to sleep!” but in the most lovingly of tones.

And then the routine repeats again. Aren’t you jealous? Yeah, I didn’t think so. Of course, there are slight variations to the day. I do venture out every once in a while with Ben, either walking or meeting up with Krissy and Max. But overall, it’s the same.

So, when I post entries and it’s primarily about Ben, it’s because I HAVE NOTHING ELSE GOING ON IN MY LIFE!
Rock and Roll Triceratops

Hello World!

Benjamin Robert Sherron’s entrance into the world was an eventful one. It all started with denial…

On Tuesday, Jen had been to her OB-GYN for a checkup and it was looking like she’d be having the baby soon. Her doctor “scraped the membranes” in order to kickstart the process, which led to contractions that evening. As the night wore on, Jen tried to convince herself that what she was feeling was not contractions. For my part, I downloaded an app to time the contractions on my phone. When it became clear that it was time to go to the hospital (around 12:30 in the morning), I started running around like a sitcom caricature of a dad to be. I mean, I forgot my wallet, for chrissakes.

Anyway, we got to the hospital around 1:00 a.m. and Jen’s contractions were 3 minutes apart, about a minute in duration and were escalating in intensity. She was 2 cm dialated, but she was cleared to get the epidural. 3:00 rolls around and the epidural is in effect, so we were advised to get some sleep and they’d be back around 5:00 to check in and break her water if it hadn’t broken already.

At 3:30, I awake to a swarm of doctors, nurses and residents tending to Jen. The baby’s heart rate had dropped and they were trying to see if they could bring it up. After a few minutes of intervention and assessment, they call a “code white,” gather her up (bed and all), and we head off to the operating room for a C-Section. Now, at this point, I’m all “OK, they seem concerned, but we’re in good hands here.” Then, we turn the corner and head to the straight-away and the people pushing the bed start running (yes, literally running, like a Grey’s Anatomy episode) and then I’m running and then I’m starting to freak out a little bit. We get to the OR and a nurse is getting me gowned up, but then I get stopped at the door. Turns out that the epidural wasn’t enough to keep her awake, so they had to put her under general anesthesia and I wasn’t allowed into the room.

So, I’m sitting outside the door, and I hear them putting her under and then I’m just waiting and worrying. And it wasn’t even 90 seconds later that I heard Benjamin’s first cry. And I’m thinking “That’s a good sign.” A nurse comes to me and says that I can see my son. I go in there, Jen is still asleep and being attended to, and right there is my son. So I’m thrilled to meet my baby and worried about my wife at the same time. Thankfully, the other nurse assures me that Jen is doing well. They are stitching her up when yet another nurse brings me my camera, which was left in the other room with all the commotion.

Benjamin's Debut

And just like that it hits me: I’m a dad. Before I can get too maudlin, Jen starts coming out of her medically induced nap. After asking several times to make sure that Ben was OK and that he had all ten fingers and toes, she gets to the important questions: “Is he ugly?” and “Does he look Asian?” The answers: Not ugly and sometimes more Asian than others:

All Swaddled

After a stint in the recovery room and some frequently hilarious post-sedation conversation, we make our way up to our room and have our first moment with the new mom and baby.

Mama and Baby

An eventful entrance, to be sure, but both Jen and Benjamin are doing well. We took lots of pictures and will have even more to come. Until then: Hello, Benjamin!

The Happy Family

It Sure is Quiet Here

Nope, we have not become hermits for the past three months, sitting at home with the curtains drawn and eating tubs of ice cream for comfort. We haven’t been turning down invites to the social events of the summer just to stare vacantly at our living room wall. Don’t you worry, we are actually very much alive and busy as hell! This has been an insane summer. We’ve barely spent any time at home due to the fact that there was so much going on. Let’s give you a quick rundown of what’s been going on for the past three months:

Vows

1. Brian and Leslie’s wedding. What a beautiful couple, congratulations!

2. Paul’s Potluck Party. (Finally, only like 4 years in the making!)

3. Brewfest. And perfect timing, we left right when a mother of a storm came blowing through.

4. Blake Smith Trivia Night. We did not win but we sure did have fun. I do have to say, this is a great trivia night, mostly due to the categories and exorbitant amounts of alcohol flowing.

5. Shakespeare in the Park. I tried it again this time only because I decided, “If you can’t beat them, join them.” Brought my folding chair this time, bitches!

6. Katie’s Annual Backyard BBQ. Another fun summertime event which ended with inappropriate questions and a fire big enough to burn down the complex. Good thing the fire department is in front.

Fireworks!

7. Fair St. Louis. We had to have fireworks, it’s a must during the Fourth of July.

8. My baby shower. Yes, I said it. I know I haven’t mentioned it much on this website, probably because I thought I was just gaining a few extra pounds. Just kidding. I think I just haven’t mentioned yet because whenever I do, I freak out and have a meltdown. Am I ready to be a mom? Am I ready to have this little person change my entire life? Can I afford to have a baby? Am I ever going to be able to sleep or will I be a zombie for the rest of my life? Will I like him? What if…ahhh!!! Meltdown is commencing!

9. Lake of the Ozark weekend. My last vacation before baby. And spending it with some of our close friends, exactly how to do a weekend trip. And a special shout-out to Krissy’s family for opening their home to us! It was very much appreciated!

10. Baby shower #2. Must breathe, must not panic! Babies need a lot of crap! Oh god, time is ticking away, I need to do so much! Can I handle this? What if he never stops crying? Oh no, I have to clean up all that stuff that comes out of him? Ewww! Meltdown #2 is commencing!

11. Moving day! That’s right, folks! Bob and I are official homeowners! Okay, so we’re homeowners again. We are now living in what I call a “mom and dad” house. Two-story, four bedroom house with a garage and basement. Just picture the house you grew up in and you’ve just seen our house.

Group Shot

12. Loufest 2011. The second year of this indie festival and the weather turned out perfectly! Thank you Mother Nature, I knew you were sympathetic to my condition. That and the two K’s (Kate and Katie) scored VIP tickets where we got to chill out on hammocks in the shade while sipping on free Pearl Vodka mixed drinks. I have the many plastic cups to prove it.

That sums it up, then why we haven’t been around. With being pregnant, buying a house, going to doctor’s appointments, and general life, some things fall to the wayside like updating this site. I could say that I promise to do better but then I would be lying.