30 June 2006

Baby Update

Mark continues to grow. I beam with pride every time a new person stops by to meet him and gasps at how large he is. While Katie doesn't necessarily share my level of pride in his size just yet, (afterall, she was the one carrying him around for 9 months, going through 36 hours of labor, and finally getting a C section) but she is just as proud of the little guy as I am. The people whose reaction I'm the most amused by are the nurses. I don't know if they're supposed to act like every child is the most amazing they've ever seen to stroke the parent's ego, but so far upon hearing that he was 9.5 pounds and 21.5 inches each one has made a face of amazement and said, "Ach, nein!" which losely translates to, "NO WAY!"

Since I'm on R&R at the moment, I'm able to spend most of my time in the hospital with Katie. I took my computer to her room so we can watch DVDs while Mark sleeps which has been a contributing factor in my not having posted in a while. I have been taking all sorts of pictures with my new camera bought specifcally for the occasion, but since the computer is at the hospital I'm not yet able to publish them as I don't have all the parts I need in one place. I'll get creative tonight and figure out a way to put some of the better pictures online, I don't think anyone's too concerned to see the picture of Mark wiggling so much that his arms disappear in the blur making him look like a burrito with a noggin on top.

You'll also be happy to know that I finally defeated the poopy diaper! Emboldened by my wife's close observation and advice I managed to "ick" my way through several rotations of dirty diapers. Thankfully he has finally gotten most of the tar stuff out of his system ("out of his system", that used to be a figurative term) and it's much easier to clean up now, though much more stinky.

Something that's been creeping up on my lately is having to go back. I still have about a week left here so it's not too close yet, but I'm already finding ways to prepare myself mentally for having to say goodbye to my sweetie again and my son for the first time. What I like to do is focus on the positive things, like being able to be back with my Soldiers. It kills me that I'm here and they're still there. Another "positive" thing, though very likely selfish, is that I won't have to clean up diapers for about another five months. Naturally diaper detail is well worth the benefits of being there to see him grow, but I'm trying to focus on the positive, remember.

I'll also get to carry a pistol again. After living with a pistol strapped to my hip for 7 months I feel vulnerable without it. A common theme for Soldiers freshly out of the desert is weapon loss anxiety (I made up the name, but it's an accurate description). This is when at seemingly random moments, the troop panics and frantically looks around to see where the weapon was left only to realize that it was been turned in weeks ago. So far the funniest thing that's happened to me as a result of having been deployed is that after a particular German victory in the World Cup, I was walking down the street to my house when a kid lit a string of firecrackers and tossed it out into the road behind me in celebration. Upon hearing the first "BANG" I jumped behind the closest car I could find. After realizing that those weren't gunshots I looked around to see if anyone had seen me, a foregone conclusion when you're 6'5". I got some funny looks, but it seemed that most people just though I had simply been frightened and didn't realize that I was a Soldier.

As for the news from Iraq, I must confess that I haven't really been paying attention lately as I've been absorbed with Mark and Katie. I did catch a headline at Iraq the Model though saying that mentioned that some of the insurgent groups are beginning to talk reconcilliation. Very interesting stuff over there at ITM.

I have begun to put together my paper outlining how we're achieving victory in Iraq. I'm eager to get it finished, but I'm more eager to get it right so I'm taking it slow. You can be assured that I'll be publishing the whole thing here, though likely in installments over time as it would probably be too long for a single post.

And speaking of long posts, I'm gonna wrap this one up. I need to get myself cleaned up to go to the hospital and be with my family again! Thanks for all the kind posts everyone, they do brighten my day!


Anonymous Tim said...

Congratulations! Best wishes to you and your family.

Anonymous Michele said...

Congratulations on the birth of your son...he is beautiful!!

Enjoy the time you have with your "sweetie" and your precious little one.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

thanks for the update bandit:)
but please spend as much time
as u can with your sweeties!

andrea/summer pj's

Blogger Robert F. Griffing said...

Looking forward to the next batch of attachments from our younger rel.


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