My wife, Lindsay and I are approaching our two year anniversary on June 29. Over the last two years we have made life plans such as travel, career aspirations, eventually purchasing a new house where we can raise a family; which leads me to my topic: starting a family.
I will never forget the Saturday before Mother’s Day 2015. Shortly after waking up that morning, I had returned to our bedroom and my wife was standing in there with joy on her face, and hands me the pregnancy test. It was positive. My jaw fell to the floor and then both of us embraced with joy, relief and excitement. We had been trying for almost a year and began to worry perhaps there was something wrong with one of us, or even both, to the point that we had decided that if she was not pregnant by July, that I would get tested.
Shortly after we found out, we headed downstairs to eat breakfast and figure out a creative way to tell our family members. We came up with the idea to get picture frames that said “I heart my grandma” and another that said “I heart Auntie” and place a picture of the positive pregnancy test to hand out to Lindsay’s mom and sister for Mother’s Day. It was a secret that we kept from her side of the family for a day. Her family and I gathered for Mother’s Day dinner and we gave them their presents and told them they had to open it at the same time. Their faces were similar to ours, full of excitement and pure bliss. My family, which is scattered across America, found out via phone calls shortly after we found out that Saturday. My brothers and dad were very excited for us and all four of them asked the same question: “What are you guys hoping for, a boy or girl?” Lindsay and I always fantasized that we would have one of each. Lindsay would like a girl first and to be honest, I would like a boy to goof around with and watch sports, and to see a younger version of me. Above all though, Lindsay and I realize that we’re blessed and that as long as Baby Cruz, boy or girl, is healthy and happy that is truly what matters to us.
We went to her first doctor’s appointment a few weeks ago and got our first image of our newest family member, via ultrasound. The both of us stared in awe at that hard-to-see black and white image of what appeared to be a peanut like image, as she was only seven weeks into her pregnancy at the time. Lindsay downloaded an app on her phone to follow the baby’s growth progress until her due date of January 13, 2016.
Since then the two of us stop at various stores to look at baby clothes, for both boys and girls, along with cribs, toys, furniture, diapers, strollers and everything else that Baby Cruz will need. The thought of having a baby has been exciting and a little overwhelming at the same time. Having a baby is a lifetime commitment.
Fictional character Furious Styles, played by Lawrence Fishburne in the movie Boyz N The Hood, said it best: “Any fool with a (explicit) can make a baby but only a real man can raise his children.” From the very first time I saw that movie, those words stuck with me and I knew I would implement them some day.
This small, innocent human being is counting on his or her daddy to raise them, guide them, and take care of them when they are sick. When they get older, they count on daddy to check under the bed for monsters, teach them how to ride their bike, play catch and other sports. When he or she grows a little more, they will know right from wrong, yet will face the everyday peer pressure from friends and the everyday temptations. As a parent, my responsibility is to help guide them in their choices, send them down the right path. That is my ultimate goal in life for them. I hope that when they read this when they are older, that I carried out these words and provided them with as much as knowledge, memories and happiness in their lives. Even though I am about six months away from meeting my baby, it has already provided me with knowledge, memories and happiness in the short time that I found out about Baby Cruz.
Dennis D. Cruz is a staff reporter for The Oakdale Leader, The Riverbank News and The Escalon Times. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 209-847-3021.