3 Things Thursday: 3 Times Fatherhood Made Me Love My Husband Even More

Thursday, August 20, 2020

3 Things Thursday: the "rule of three" principle suggests that sets of threes are inherently more humorous and satisfying than any other number of things.  On Thursdays I feature random lists pertaining to anything and everything -- grouped in 3, of course.



1.  Earlier this summer, we rented canvas dumpsters from Home Depot so that we could clear out a ton (almost literally) of bricks from our backyard. The dumpster pickup was scheduled for Monday morning, and when the truck pulled up, it was loud and screechy.  Our son heard the brakes grinding to a halt and jumped to his tiptoes to peer out the window in giddy anticipation.  He gasped - the purest form of toddler delight - and raised his clasped hands to his mouth in disbelief.  All too soon -- not even 2 minutes later -- the truck puffed away, having completed its short-lived mission.  Disappointed, our son looked longingly down the now-empty street as if to say, "Did that really happen?" Joe turned to me and in total sincerity said, "I'm gonna think of something else we need to clear out of the yard so that we can schedule another one of those. He needs to see that again."  What he really means: he needs to see him see that again.

2.  On our last day of summer, before I headed back to work after a full 5 months off, we spent a sunny afternoon together in the backyard as a family.  Our son splashed in the splash pad we had attached to the hose and then stomped away through the grass, our clumsy horse of a dog doing her best to knock him off his feet in the process.  There was nothing particularly unusual or noteworthy about this occasion -- it was an afternoon as ordinary as any other, particularly those of a pandemic that bleed together (because what is time in 2020?).  Even so, in that otherwise nondescript moment, Joe turned to me, his voice catching in his throat.  "I don't want him to grow up," he said.  "I just want him to stay like this forever." Funny how quarantine has slowed our lives such that these simple, Tuesday afternoons become seared in our memories as ones we'll never forget.

3.  Our nanny often sits in the backyard hammock with our son beside her, the two of them lazily lounging in the sun.  The other day, Joe and I were home from work at lunch and saw them rocking in the hammock together, deep in conversation.  This was particularly noteworthy because our son's speech delays render back-and-forth conversations of this sort more or less impossible (for the time being - he's making progress!).  Shocked to see him so engaged, Joe asked me if I knew what they were talking about.  I didn't, but commented that their discussion appeared to be riveting.  Several minutes later, on his way out the door, Joe directed me me, "Hey, call me at the office if you find out what they were talking about. I'm going to be thinking about it non-stop until I find out."  Sure enough, when I called him a half hour later, he picked up, "Did you find out?!" He can be in the middle of balancing a trial brief, a pretrial conference, depo. prep, an upcoming client meeting, and he still answers his phone on the first ring, eager to learn of our son's latest developmental milestone.  Our kids are pretty lucky.  And so am I.



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