This afternoon, my Dad called. My Dad never calls. I talk to him on the phone, but only when my Mom passes it to him. He’s not a phone initiator.
Hearing him on the other end of the line was surprise enough, but the quality of his voice was even more of a surprise. I could tell he had something significant to say and something that he was excited about. When he said “We talked to your grandfather today” I almost stopped breathing.
Let me rewind the tape a bit.
You can sum up my Dad’s family in two words. Southern Baptist. Hyper conservative and deeply religious. My aunt married a preacher and every male in the family (with the exception of my Dad) is a deacon in their church. One of my cousins took his two (very) young children and his wife around the world to bring Christianity to a country in the former Soviet Union. Yeah. They are still living there.
While I have been out to my Mom’s crazy Catholic family for years, not a word has been said to anyone in my Dad’s family. Not surprisingly, I haven’t been close with any of them since I was a kid. During the one major conversation that I have had with my Dad about this issue, I let him know that it was his call about when and what to share with his family. They live in another state and I don’t have meaningful relationships with any of them, so this worked just fine for me.
For the last 10 years or so, I have assumed that the cat would be out of the bag when my grandfather passed away. He has been in poor health for years, but he makes it through obstacle after obstacle. Although I wasn’t sure how it would work out as my parents live in the same town as 90% of these relatives, I couldn’t tell that they had any plans to tell any of them about Yogi. They have no idea that we were married or that we were trying to get pregnant and certainly not that we were actually expecting.
So….. imagine my surprise when 14 days after Yogi arrived, my Dad calls to tell me that he spent the weekend telling the whole family. Everyone. I think he even emailed the missionaries. According to him, everyone is excited about the baby and glad to hear that I’m happy. I’m guessing this is a “love the sinner, hate the sin” kind of response, but it’s better than other things I could imagine.
Just another indication that having a baby is one crazy experience.