Now that’s a sensitive question. Despite how tough and rugged people must think I am, it turns out that I am quite a sensitive person. There are times when just some music will start to choke me up, but I will usually find the fortitude and manliness to fight it. For that reason it’s hard to say if something counts or not, so I will choose something of significance – something that I just cannot deny.
I was moved to tears when my daughter was born. I couldn’t help it – everything was so intense! We were going to do it without drugs, but the doctor insisted on Pitocin and then my wife insisted on the painkiller that goes with it. We dodged the epidural, then my wife changed her mind when it was too late. Fortunately, my mother-in-law was there to help us through the delivery. She was definitely great for the moral support. I was supposed to cut the umbilical cord, and then because I was helping out at the top of the bed it came down to the doctor having to do it. Dang.
No matter how much I tell myself I’m not going to do it, I know I’m going to and there’s no escape. So I try to think of other things – baseball, parasitic wasps, foot-long hotdogs – can’t explain that last one, but it works. I’m pretty sure that I’m just coming off as really flustered. Really confused. Out of my element, as any guy should look when fully immersed in a woman’s demesnes of experience, even though I was fairly confident about what I was getting into; and of course, I had no clue about some of the particulars.
I cried many times after that, mostly out of frustration. My daughter appeared to respond to everything with the fear of a feral creature. We had given birth to an opossum. The first time I had her to myself for a couple of hours I thought I would go old-school, H.P. Lovecraft, I-just-looked-upon-the-countenance-of-Cthulu insane. My wife saw it the moment she came home.
Fast forward three months: the daughter is starting to smile and not screaming like a banshee as much. I was calling that progress. Another ten months later, my daughter is now over a year old, and I’m so proud of how awesome she is that I am almost moved to tears on a fairly regular basis.
What? No, I just got something in my eye, is all.
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