Lately Drea has been asking me to talk to the baby. I can’t put my finger on why, but I’m not completely comfortable with it. But she’ll insist and I’ll oblige and I’ll lean down ’til my face is at the underside of her belly.
“Baby,” I’ll say in a deep, paternal voice.
Occasionally Drea will act the part of the baby and say “Hi Daddy” in a high voice.
“I know you probably have no idea what’s going on in there right now…”
“It’s great in here! Life is good!” Drea will say, still as the baby.
“Yes, well, you’ll be out soon and things will start making more sense.”
“Eat more sugar! Mmmm! Sugar! Weee!”
“Hmm. Right. Well…Dad out!”
And then I’ll lean back and Drea will give me a look like I just wussed out. But what do I say to the unborn baby? MY unborn baby? MY unborn SON? Sheesh.
Do I talk about myself? That seems a little boring for him. Do I talk about current events? That just sounds like a bummer. Do I tell him about how we’re prepping for him all the time? How I’ve assembled a crib and a changing table and a glider and this baby is going to have a super great room? Or how BOTH of his grandmothers wanted to come along with us to Babies R Us for one long afternoon of gift registration where we picked out things I’ve never even heard of?
I could tell him about the time I got thanked in the acknowledgments of a book because the author confused me with someone else at the Ryerson who actually helped them. Or I could tell the story of how I sped too much when I was a teenager and had to go to a traffic school where we did nothing but watch tapes of America’s Scariest Police Chases on FOX for three hours.
I could share my wisdom about how to make great scrambled eggs, or how to best cut up a mango.
I could tell him all about technology he’ll probably never encounter, like cassette decks and typewriters and my first computer, an Apple LCII, which didn’t really do much beyond word processing, being a calculator and letting me play the occasional game of Where in the USA in Carmen Sandiego.
Deep down I know that it doesn’t really matter WHAT I talk about. I could read the phone book to the baby and it wouldn’t know the difference. But I just want to do exactly the right things, y’know?
I should probably try and let go of that thinking before it completely cripples me, shouldn’t I?