Give Him His Due

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Now he’s leading the balance beam parade at preschool!

Today is Das Big Boy’s due date. I almost forgot to mark the milestone, but at around three o’clock today I noticed the date. I had wanted to acknowledge it somehow this year, to light a candle every day between his October twenty-first birthday and his NICU discharge date of February eleventh, with some sort of layover today. Of course, I did none of these things.

I did try to tell Das Big Boy about it. He’s shown some interest in the NICU as a topic, and talks about how he lived there after he was born (which of course breaks my heart). I’m quite sure that if he’d realized he could have claimed today as his birthday, he would have. Every birthday we’ve celebrated since his –be it his classmate’s or his sister’s–he’s informed me that: “I want it to be my birthday again,” or “No, it’s my birthday,” or, “Now it’s October twenty-first,” or, “I want all the presents. Those presents are for me!”

Anyway, we had a conversation like this:

HH: DBB, did you know that today is your due date?

DBB: Interested look

HH: Today is the day that you were supposed to be born. Remember how you came out of Mommy’s body early?

DBB, possibly attempting to change the subject, or more likely addressing this issue of being inside someone’s body with the only concrete example he understands: “What’s in the mommy monkey puppet’s breast?”

HH: The baby monkey.

DBB: The baby monkey!!

Maybe next year we’ll have a more thorough chat about his due date. Or maybe I’ll forget it entirely. I think that would be kind of nice.

Don’t forget to enter the book giveaway for The Emperor’s Blades if you haven’t already. Only nine minutes left! Winner announced tomorrow!

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Also, once you’re done reading The Emperor’s Blades, you should read Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed, if you haven’t already. A favorite quotation that’s been bouncing around my head all day: “The best thing you can possibly do with your life is to tackle the motherfucking shit out of love.”

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