Daniel-Ryan Spaulding is a Comedian based in Europe, exploring gender, sexuality, culture, stereotypes & identity. For More Videos & Tour Dates this Summer: @dr_spaulding SUBSCRIBE to the Channel & Join Facebook Fan Page: www.facebook.com/danielryanspaulding
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Tuesday, May 20, 2014
Today a week ago our lives were permanently changed forever, for the better. Last week this time we were in Cape Town to fetch our son. After ten months of waiting we finally reached the final stage of our adoption journey and it was both thrilling and petrifying at the same time. Thrilling because we finally got to meet our son and bring him home and petrifying because we had no clue what the hell we were doing.
One thing I realized last week was that when you are travelling with a baby is that people at airports are so much nicer to you. As most of you know airport security and I have no love for each other; mainly because I am always treated like a suicide bomber or drug mule by them. But last week was completely different. I managed to board the flight with things airport security is convinced can bring down a plane: deodorant, nail clippers and four bottles exceeding the liquid limit.
Also, I set off each and every metal detector and nobody molested me with that frisking business. When security wanted to question me about the said contraband which their x-ray machine picked up I just said “Shsss… my baby is sleeping” and I was let go and not taken into a brightly lit back room and stripped searched as I have become accustomed to.
On our flight back with Michael I was a bit worried. I have always been one of those people who got annoyed when people board one of my flights with a baby. Now I have become one of those people. I was concerned that with the change of air pressure with the ascent and descent that his ears would hurt and that he would cry. Then that I would cry and that the cabin crew would have to take both of us to the back of the plane and drug us while hubby pretends not to know who we are. Luckily this didn’t happen. Michael drank his bottle on takeoff and slept like the angel he is through the duration of the flight.
We couldn’t believe our luck with our son. He was so well behaved and once we got home we gave him his last bottle before bedtime and decided to bath him. That is when all hell broke loose. We apparently bathed him wrong and he threw a tantrum the likes I have not seen since Cher announced that she was retiring from touring. He screamed and he was only 2% bathed before we abandoned the idea completely, dried him off, dressed him in a cute onesie and settled him to bed. He gave us both a look that I could swear meant “What. The. Fuck. You have no idea what you are doing?” and he was right.
The next day the Kangaroo mom phoned me and told me that our bath was probably not hot enough and that we should act with more determination when we bath him. Her advice worked and our boy now loves bath time. The Kangaroo mom also gave us a schedule. Being OCD and suffering from anxiety I LOVE schedules, lists and order in general. It makes me feel safe and this is what separates us from the animals. Our son seems to agree with me on this. Or at least he did until Sunday.
I was told some time ago that babies can be assholes sometimes. They just are and there is nothing that you can do about it. I never believed this until Sunday morning. Everything went well until around 8am that morning. Michael decided to cry for no reason. He didn’t have a wind, dirty nappy, was hungry, tired or was being snagged by his clothes. He was crying which later turned into full out screaming. He screamed for a full hour, eight minutes and twenty five seconds. He was being an asshole and we all needed a hug after because he freaked us the fuck out and whatever it was that he cried/screamed about was out of his system. Also, he gave me three new grey hairs because of it. Luckily we have not had a similar dramatic performance of “I am screaming because I can” since from him.
Michael is a delightful baby and is actually really easy to take care of. I cannot believe that one can fall in love with a little human so quickly. He has only been with us a week and I cannot imagine our lives without him. However, I can imagine my life without another one of his weapons of mass destruction in his diapers though. Poopy diapers are vile and I believe they are the way God punishes us for being shitty children to our parents. What makes it worse is each time I have to change a poopy diaper and gags Michael laughs at me. He is very proud of his poop and loves seeing me nauseous.
We are lucky that Michael sleeps through the night. Between 7pm and 05:30am the only times he makes us get up is because he lost his gawd awful dummy. Then we just find it, give it to him and he falls back asleep again. The whole routine literally takes ten seconds at most. So we are not sleep deprived at all. However, getting out of our PJ’s before 11am is almost impossible. I also have now for a week smelled either of sour milk due to baby vomit or Avon baby lotion and sometimes of both. I have also gone to the shop with my shirt covered in baby vomit without noticing it or actually caring. People who judge baby vomit stained shirts are assholes.
It is still early days of parenthood for us but thus far Michael has been a blessing and a joy. Some nights I just sit by his cot and watch him sleep and every time he wakes up from a nap and gives me that beautiful smile of his when he sees me melts my heart. I still find it hard to wrap my head around the fact that I am now a dad. I am just so very surprised at how naturally it has come to me. I mean I have always said when I was younger that I never wanted kids. And look at me now. My life feels complete and whole and we are all three tremendously happy. Well, until the next hour long tantrum that is.
Till next time.
Tuesday, May 6, 2014
After ten months of an agonizing wait it finally happened. This week we got “The Call”. The call we were hoping and waiting for. The call that would say that our lives will now forever be changed. The call that would make hubby and I and our family so incredible happy. The call that said we are now going to be a family.
When we started on our adoption journey in August of 2013 we entered into the process being very optimistic. However, we soon learned that adoption is a very emotional process fraught with emotional pitfalls that one should navigate around with the greatest of care. I will not lie and say that the process was easy because it was not.
We have had some fights along the way. Hubby and I have fought with each other. We have fought with our social worker. We have even fought with ourselves. Mostly this happened out of sheer frustration and most of the fights hubby and I had were over stupid things that we now look back on going “What the hell was wrong with us”.
The hardest part of the adoption process is not the screening, the psychometric assessments, the interviews, home visit or panel interview. The fact that adoption is not a cheap venture was also not such an issue. The hardest part of the adoption process is, after all is said and done and you are finally declared paper pregnant, the long wait. The waiting can kill you. Or possibly drive you nuts.
We have been paper pregnant since November 2013 and to be honest very few days passed since then that I didn’t think about whether our baby was born yet. Very few conversation between hubby and I did not include the adoption in them. So we did what we could to occupy our minds. We prepared the nursery, bought all the things we could buy that we would need. We even had our baby shower in February this year.
It was like we were psychically willing our child into this world. We dreamed about babies. We noticed the gazillions of people with babies, gay and straight, in the shops and at restaurants. Isn’t it weird how you all of a sudden see babies everywhere while you are waiting for yours? It was like we were being tortured and tormented by the universe as we were reminded around every corner of that we were waiting for.
Then on Thursday, as I was heading to my Botox appointment, I got the call. Well, actually I got two. The first one was to inform me that we have a baby and the second one was to arrange for a meeting for the next day. As hubby’s Botox appointment was before mine I sent him a text that read “Wait for me outside and under NO circumstances can you leave. This is important!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
Hubby probably thought I discovered something about our plastic surgeon online that freaked me out. Or that I WebMD self-diagnosed myself with the Ebola Virus again. But this time it obviously was nothing like that at all. I have not self-diagnosed myself with an exotic disease in ages. As I arrived at our surgeon’s office hubby was waiting for me and was all like “Are you dying again” and I was like “We are all going to die someday. You are stuck with me and I am going to live well into my nineties and you are not allowed to die before me!”
Then I told him the great news. He was in tears which also almost made me cry but I never do that in public. Very few people have ever seen me cry. Also, when I cry I prefer to do it in private as it ain’t pretty people. It’s like my gift to society. You’re welcome.
We were both overjoyed. After ten months we are finally going to be parents to a three month old little boy. As I started wrapping my brain around the idea the rest of that day I was overcome with both excitement and being utterly terrified. I mean, I have never had a baby. I have only changed a nappy once in my life and generally babies scared me. Now I am going to have one of my own. Will I even know what to do? What if I fuck up? What if I am a bad parent? Can I afford all the therapy my child may someday need because he has an eccentric dad?
After freaking out a realization hit me. We are not the first parents to go through this. All parents go through this with their first child. This is probably exactly what they must have felt like; except they are not my kind of crazy. The sense that other people before me suffered gave me a sense of relief.
Also, our son is three months old and past most of the crappy and awkward baby stuff newborns go through. He is still a baby and I am sure we will have plenty of sleepless nights ahead but I plan on savoring and enjoying every second of it. Yes, even if I am covered in baby poop at 3 o’clock in the morning and he won’t stop crying. I will so Blog and Facebook that. With pictures.
On Tuesday we will be fetching our son and I cannot wait. After the meeting we will have this afternoon we will be booking flights as soon as we find out what our court date and time is. It is exciting times in our household. The cats and bunnies have no idea what they are in for. The whole lot of us will be sleep deprived and our little zoo is now getting a little prince. He is the blessing that we longed for. I cannot believe this is finally happening. I. Am. So. Happy.
To read more about our adoption journey click HERE
Till next time.