Real Housewives of Cologne, Episode 15

18 05 2021

“THE ENVELOPE PLEASE”

You all want to know how it went this weekend.

There is going to be a whole lot of DADT about this weekend. But the way I nudged it out of the soyboy-in-law, and my wife out of my sister-in-law, they did everything they were supposed to on a pure necessity level, but not much more, and nowhere near what we think they should have done. So it might not literally take us years to undo the damage; Maybe only months.

The time leading up to this weekend just flew by, while the actual weekend itself dragged on and on, each second seemed to take a whole minute. The only saving grace for me was that I had a short business roadtrip on Saturday, which took my mind off of all my worrying a little bit and made time go by not as excruciatingly slow. The better half was not so lucky.

Yet and still, we weren’t either going to break in or interfere. All we gave them were their portable convertible cribs, a few changes of clothes, enough bottles of their mother’s pumped out breast milk, and the two car seats. Everything else, they had to buy themselves. The way we figure, if they wanted to practice being parents to infants, and use their twin nephews to do it, they were going to do it as accurately and completely as practically possible. After all, very soon, this sort of thing won’t be practice, it will be their consummate all-encompassing reality.

When we got them back, they both had a look in their eyes toward us as if to say that, the next time we pull something like this, they’re going to run away, even if they haven’t started walking.

***

In the days through the week leading up to the weekend, my father-in-law tried a few times to talk me off the ledge, trying to convince me that maybe some good will come of this. On Thursday at Abendessen, he gave me a sealed envelope, and told me not to open it until Monday.

I’ll get to that in a moment.

***

On Sunday late in the afternoon, when normal order was restored, one of the things that they conceded is that they now realize how much work it takes, and more than they were expecting. And that they really need to do a lot of mental preparation over this coming summer, and, while they didn’t quite use these words, also a lot more growing up. (If they’re in that mood, maybe they would like to settle on a nice normal rational name now, instead of what you know is their current game plan? Nein?)

We, too, realized something about ourselves. Once they took them from us on late Friday afternoon, it was the first time that they were in the direct guardianship of someone other than their parents or grandparents in their nearly five months of life. It was also the first evening where they weren’t in the direct company of either their mother or their father. Plain words, it was our first evening without them since they were on the other side of the birth canal. I counted, and the last time that had been the case before this past Friday evening was 145 days before it. We didn’t have them, but we had them. We were able to sleep on the two weekend nights without them for the first time in 145 and 146 days, respectively, and fully knowing that they weren’t there to wake us up. But we hardly slept any better.

What we realized is that we have both changed as people very quickly, starkly, and in short order. Our internal and external habits are so much different. Those 145 days ago were just that, only 145 days ago. But they seem like much longer ago. And that’s in spite of the fact that I blink and boom, there goes another month. If presented with the same version of our selves from five months ago, I doubt we’d even recognize those people.

Whoever said that a baby changes everything didn’t know the half of it. Having a baby changes so much of everything that it changes things you don’t think can be changed.

Like I just wrote above, these two now realize how much work they have to do, but they’ll soon realize how much about their existence and selves is going to change.

***

Speaking of work to do and changing selves, I’ve got another slightly thorny matter over the horizon.

Those of you who got my birth announcement know something that my father-in-law arranged for his first two grandsons, so you can guess, rightly so, that he’s going to do it for his third.  If you happen to remember an early installment of this series, then you’ll know why someone is going to have to break a certain piece of news to the soyboy-in-law.

Week before last, I asked my sister-in-law if she has let her husband in on the secret, and she said no.  Which means he’s going to have to be told, and someone is going to have to do it.  And after carefully considering the advantages and disadvantages to tasking the job to either his wife, his father-in-law, his mother-in-law, his sister-in-law, or his sister-in-law’s husband (that being myself), we came to the decision that I’m the best one out of the bunch to do it.

Some time in June, after I’m done with Magdeburg, I’m going to have to take the soyboy-in-law for a walk.  And when I put it in those terms, I realize that it will be the first time that I’ll be going on one of these “walks” in the physical presence one-to-one sense and being the one who has to do most of the talking and explaining.  It’s going to feel, well, some kind of way, to do this and not being the one on the passive end.

When I do it, I’ll be coming full circle, in a way.  Again, those of you who are both veterans of this series and received my birth announcement can figure out how.

***

Remember that envelope?

I opened up over Mittagbrot yesterday, and it had a piece of paper, and my father-in-law’s handwriting, just one sentence:

Sie werden entdecken, wie schwierig das ist.

Which translates to:

They will discover how difficult it is.

Well I’ll be damned, the old man knew.


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One response

25 05 2021
DaveRedefined

Amazing! I love this!

It's your dime, spill it. And also...NO TROLLS ALLOWED~!

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