Tuesday, January 09, 2007

The olives make it a healthy drink

One martini is all right. Two are too many, and three are not enough.
--James Thurber

I'm writing this after imbibing the second martini that I've ever mixed, and I'm blaming the gin for any errors or offense taken by you. So there--you've been warned.

It's a martini-worthy day here in Casa Bradstein, due to two health-related events:

I've got a bike/You can ride it if you like/It's got a basket/A bell that rings/And things to make it look good
I pulled out my own copy of the best hardtail MTB ever made* and rode it to work and home again, getting back in the habit, I hope, of bike commuting. Mama and I both commuted by bike until we got pregnant and there was the not-so-small issue of nausea, then a belly, then a big belly, and so on. When I do bike to work, I have more energy, feel better, and become almost tolerable at work, so let's hope that I keep it up. However, after over 16 months off the bike, riding just five miles today kicked my ass, hence the martini anesthetic--hey, there are two Cat. 3 climbs in my short commute.

Morning smiles/Like the face of a newborn child
Speaking of anesthetic, our second health-related event was our presurgery visit to the pediatric surgeon for 3B's upcoming surgery. On the 19th, thanks for asking. For an undescended testicle, thanks again for asking. I'm not sure why I'm so forthcoming about the details of this when I was so circumspect about the results of my debates over whether to circumcise him, but here we are. Perhaps in something that I write about this, you'll figure out the difference and let me know. This is how 3B was born, as are three to five percent of all men, and there's no way of knowing if he has an undescended testicle or is missing one until the surgery is complete. However, that hasn't kept people from confirming that he definitely does or doesn't have a second testicle. The ultrasound tech spent twenty minutes using the ultrasound to try to find the one that he clearly does have, the one that I could point out from twenty paces, then declared that since she couldn't find his other one, there was no chance that it existed. Um, yeah, could I get a second opinion? The only person I believe so far is the surgeon, who has told us that nobody will know until he looks inside 3B's abdomen, which is exactly what he's going to do on in 10 short days.

But that's not what makes me nervous, and I'm not sure why. Perhaps it's my inability to react until an event becomes tangible to me--it's not that I don't care; I simply can't miss you until you're gone. Or perhaps it's because I went through a similar procedure when I was 22 or so and had to have a right inguinal hernia repair. Whatever it is, the procedure doesn't make me nervous, the anesthetic does. What if 3B wakes up a dull, humorless, pale reflection of his former self? What if his cute little grin is lopsided? Or not nearly so broad as it is now? What if he loses his curiosity? Or his initiative? Or his propensity to cuddle? These are the thoughts that stop me in my tracks and make me want to walk out of my cube, drive home, and hold 3B for every minute until the surgery, so that I don't lose a minute of this beautiful, ephemeral life that we share right now.

If everything goes as the surgeon says it will, 3B will wake up as from a nap, see us, and be happy within minutes. He may have some irritation for a day, at most, but we won't notice a difference beyond 24 hours.

If everything goes as the surgeon says it will.

And if not . . . well, those are the demons that keep me from sleeping, that force me to re-read everything at work half a dozen times, that tighten my jaw and knot my belly and raise a lump in my throat. How dare anything get between me and my 3B, my love, my beautiful boy?

When I lived in a ranger station in the Colorado woods that I mountain-biked into and out of every day to get to work, I learned a lot about mountain biking and myself. I learned that the only way to get past fear was to go straight through it to get to the other side of it. In this case, the only way to find out how this will turn out is to wait and find out, and then we will be on the other side of the fear. That doesn't make the waiting any easier.

*This guy must have bought his bike right at P.A. Bikes right after I bought mine, because when I picked mine up there, it was one of the last half-dozen that they had, although I don't remember how many were Race Lites.

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  1. Hey I would be nervous too, but that's what makes us dads. He'll do great (and his smile will be the same).

    We'll be thinking of him on the 19th.

  2. Oscar was born with only one of his guys down. The other one came down on its own by the time he was three months or so ...

    so sorry you have to go through this. I would be all calm on the surface and just frantic underneath with worry.

    Will definitely hold y'all in my heart on the 19th.

  3. I can only anticipate exactly what it might feel like to be in a situation like the one you find yourselves in right now, and you have my every sympathy. However, I'm sure as I am the sun will come up tomorrow that everything will be fine.

  4. It's those unknowns that are the worst part. I'd be most worried about the anesthesia too. But, babies are incredibly resilient, and 3b is very strong and healthy, thanks to his awesome parents.

  5. So, um, dja drop one olive in that martini, or two?

    Sorry. Had to ask. Best of luck next week.