Thursday, October 30, 2008

Cherry Peppers and Tator Chips

In early 1983, while visiting my parents in Arapaho, Brenda developed a craving for cherry peppers and potato chips. I didn't think much about it. We finished our visit and traveled home. One day shortly thereafter, upon arriving home from work, I was greeted with the words "I am pregnant." The cherry peppers and tator chips offered a clue but... I totally missed it.

Honestly, I wasn't real excited about the news. It wasn't that I didn't want another child because I did. The problem was that Brenda had been terribly sick nearly everyday of her first pregnancy, had a very difficult delivery, and I couldn't stand the thought of living out chapter two of that book. But time marched on and Brenda did just fine with the pregnancy.

From early on, we knew this baby would be different, but we didn't know how much different. Unlike Tish, who was rather passive while in the womb, this baby was active and the more he grew the more active he became. I think he nearly kicked us both out of bed a couple of times!

September 9, 1983 was a day like any other day. I went to work and Brenda went for a check up. Neither of us had any idea that this would be the day. My superintendent called the site and told my foreman (father in-law) that Brenda was having a baby and I neeeded to get to the hospital. Long story short... I didn't get to the hospital in time... Brenda had to deliver the baby... alone. I missed the birth of my son!

Since that day I have strived to miss very little of his life. When he was a baby, before he could even walk, I took him places with me... with out a car seat (don't tell any one). One of my fondest memories is of him crawling under the house to be with me while I replumbed our bathroom and kitchen. He couldn't have been more than the age Bree is now and he stayed with it all day long. I remember him learning to ride his bike without training wheels and picking gravel out of his wounded knees when he would wreck, carrying him on my shoulders for 36 holes of golf and getting him sun burned, picking splinters out of his feet and hands, holding him when he was hurt, and taking him deer hunting for the first time. I sat him under a tree, told him not to move until I came back for him, and didn't return for probably two hours... it was 19 degrees and he was only 7 or 8 years old! I know... I was an abusive parent... but he loved it.

During his elementary and middle school years, he and I were attached at the hip. He was more than a son, he was a helper and might I say a dandy helper he was. Like many boys trying to find their way, he drifted during his high school and college years. I didn't handle this well... it hurt. But knowing this transition was necessary, I adjusted accordingly, and welcomed his return.

Last month Shane turned 25... I must have blinked. He's married, has a good job and works hard. He's tough on the outside but tender on the inside, moody, fun loving, likes to laugh, loves it when he can make others laugh, has a need for speed, loves the outdoors, and loves kids... especially Bree and his little fishin' buddy Jarrett. I pray that God will one day bless he and Ashley with a child because he will be one incredible dad.

Looking back, cherry peppers and tator chips were not only a pregnancy clue, but a fairly accurate indicator of the temperament type of the man the baby we were about to have would become. I never would have guessed it.

1 comment:

Dawn said...

Hot and salty. Ha!