Most Precious Parenting Memories

» I have a special treat today. For me! Today I share a few of my most favorite parenting memories. Vignettes of early fatherhood that I've never shared before. Some of my most precious memories. Places I go when I'm missing the Bug.

Since Newtown, and especially after seeing those photos of Peter's newborn son .. I've been thinking ..

Pooh and Christopher Robin Walking together in the Hundred Acre Wood.. about the preciousness of little children. The innocence. (The most fragile of graces.)

My first precious parenting memory that I'd like to share today comes from the time when the Bug was very small. I'm not sure .. maybe 2 years old.

It was the middle-of-the-night .. when we were living back at the old house. (What an enchanted place that was. A safe haven for us. A sanctuary. A quiet, protected sanctuary.)

» Little Hand | Big Face

I remember being very tired when I heard him stir (.. sleeping there beside me).

It was dark, very dark .. and I was facing the other way .. in the process of summoning the strength to turn and see what he was doing ..

.. when I felt his hand light on my face .. his tiny, little hand .. exploring the contours of my face. With those tiny little fingers.

I suspect he was simply trying to determined who it was sleeping there beside him. (He had been going back-n-forth between his mom & his dad since well before his first birthday.)

Anyway, I felt his little hand explore my face, my scruffy face .. then he laid back down, and went back to sleep. =)

Words seem wholly inadequate to describe the feeling. Like nothing I had ever experienced. So precious was the feeling .. that I can still feel that little hand today.

PS - Happy Easter! "He is not here, for He is risen, just as He said."

Environmental Nature Center | Newport Beach, California » A Waking Smile in the Woods

I used to take the Bug to the Environmental Nature Center (ENC) there in Newport Beach .. because of the wonderful wooded feeling you get ..

.. which is difficult to find anywhere else in semi-arid Orange county without a considerable drive. It reminded me of Connecticut, where I grew up. [ For 150 meters, anyway. =) ]

When he was still very small I would carry him .. thru the wooded areas of the ENC. Eventually he would become drowsy as his nap time approached.

One time, I noticed he was already asleep. So instead of taking him all the way back home, and maybe waking him in the process .. I simply found a comfortable place to lie down just off the beaten trail.

••• today's entry continues here below •••

There I let him sleep on my chest .. seeing he was so small at the time. You know » the healthy effect of breathing fresh air. My body-heat rising to warm him. I opened my sweatshirt and draped both sides over him.

I felt him begin to stir about an hour later. (I was pretty tired myself in those early days.) He suddenly arched back and raised up to his elbows. He looked to his left, then to his right, then down .. and saw my face (.. right there!).

A smile of recognition broke and crept across his face. As it grew, I was promptly smitten. Priceless. He was in an outstanding mood that entire day.

Creme Brulee All Day» Crème Brûlée All Day

I should probably add that there is nothing quite like a baby sleeping on your chest. Indescribably delicious.

I have long ago noticed the wholesome and therapeutic effects that come from spending time close to nature. In it. With it. Breathing it. Smelling it. Earth Day is coming 4/22.

Wendy, the Film School girl, used to lead those things -- Earth Day celebrations -- there in Laguna Beach .. with a blow horn (.. and probably while hugging a tree) .. before she was accepted at USC.

I remember that she would pick up trash while we walked the beach at Crystal Cove .. particularly after a winter storm would wash up trash onto the beach.

That always impressed me .. how she would run up to one of the garbage cans and dispose of her collection .. only to pick up more as we walked on up/down the coast. A true tree-hugger, she was.

Crystal Cove is also where I met the Bug's mom (.. back before she became the Bug's mom, of course) .. while running the beach there (a 3-mile stretch of coastline, 6-mile round-trip). But that's another story. =)

Today's entry remains a work-in-progress. But I must say .. that, far as writing goes, this feels like eating dessert. Crème brûlée all day .. especially after those three.tough.entries (.. "back-to-back-to-back," as Lance would say).

I am going to do one more, which I will title » The Shout (my favorite).

» Big Shout | Little Guy

This final parenting vignette means a lot to me, but I have never shared it cuz I am not sure people will relate .. because it involves his voice .. and his voice (I would imagine) affects me differently than it does others.

Pink cadillacBut .. there I was .. pulling up to his mom's place in the Porsche with the top off on a warm summer morning. And I hear this shout » "Dada!"

I couldnt SEE anybody, cuz they were both still behind the bushes. But I heard this loud shout .. so loud that it echoed down the street .. as I turned the car around to park. What a feeling.

And the tone of his voice .. and the genuine excitement it conveyed. Oh my gawd. That my son (then no more than 2 years old) was that excited to see me.

Awesome .. in the truest sense of the word. "Thank-you, God." I can still hear that shout. Amazing that such volume could come out of such a little body.

I seem to receive something more from the sound waves that came from his vocal coards and impacted my ear drums. I feel something from his heart. Something good. Something very good. It keeps me going when I am getting my ass kicked.

Nowadays he no longer shouts so ecstatically. Nowadays he runs to me (full sprint) .. when the situation presents itself (.. such as a pick-up at the park, or from the soccer field).

Runs. Full sprint.

Of those experiences that I have already shared, the time when he fell asleep in my arms at the outdoor patio at the restaurant stands out as particularly precious. ■

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This page contains a single entry by Rad published on March 31, 2013 3:31 AM.

A New Dad with his Newborn Son! was the previous entry in this blog.

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