Daddy Dearest

My husband is pretty cool. I should say that at the beginning of this post. He has the ability kool-aid-1to lead people in such a way that they would probably drink any flavor Kool-Aid he was offering.

He is also very honest. We both are. It’s one of the things that makes our relationship good. But sometimes, he’s too honest.

He has said repeatedly how shocked he is that he isn’t way turned off by pregnant me. He has also:

– compared certain body parts of mine in certain positions to African women in National Geographic

– told me I looked “very pregnant” in a sun dress I decided to wear

– told me I looked like a lemon when I donned a yellow dress

I’m not offended easily, but I do tend to obsess, so these stayed with me throughout the day (and, obviously, they haven’t entirely gone away).

But again, he’s been mostly great. We’ve been dealing with a lot the past few months. He lived in our new house for about 2 weeks before leaving for Florida and just got back last week. The day he drove home, he woke up at around 5:30am, packed up two cars worth of his mom’s stuff, and drove straight through from Tampa to Nashville. This is after a week of packing a 24 foot truck for his mom (with some help from awesome FL friends).

I say all this to preface what happened that night. It was no one’s fault.

Let’s start with his side of things. He got home around 7:30pm and we ate dinner while watching TV – a time-honored ritual in our house that we had both been missing. Shortly thereafter, he went to sleep. I had to work late, so I settled in at my desk.

After hours of ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ he wakes up the next morning, grabs his phone from the charger and pees.

Ha, he thinks. Amanda butt-dialed me. He takes another look. She butt-dialed me 47 times.

Then he checks his text messages. This is when the uh-oh comes:


Here’s my end: I’m sitting at my desk that night, working. At around midnight, finished earlier than I thought, I took the dog out for one last pee before we headed up the stairs to bed. Both my husband and I wear these big rain boots at night and in the morning so we don’t get dew all over our feet, so I’m standing in my backyard in ugly shorts, a non-maternity tank top, and the boots waiting for my dog to do her thing. She finished up and I opened the door.

That’s how it should have gone.

What actually happened was that I tried the door and found it locked. I had gotten into the habit of not locking the handle lock, which can be opened from the inside no matter what. This was due to a previous incident that involved me breaking into the house – easy, because we were still in screen season at that point.

Not so in July. And my husband hadn’t gotten the memo to lock the deadbolt instead of the handle. I was locked out. With a dog, no bra, huge black boots, and a very pregnant belly poking its way out of a too-short tank top. Not the ideal way to spend a night, especially not that night.

Luckily, I did have my phone. I called him once, twice, three times, thinking how pissed he’d be when he had to wake up and trudge down the stairs to let me in. Nothing. No response. He never used to leave it on silent, but no matter. The vibrate would wake him up eventually, right? This began a rolling call routine that lasted over the next hour until I finally called the locksmith.

But let’s back up. Locksmith was the last resort. Before that, I tried:

1. banging on the door (front and back)

2. yelling at the window (only twice – we’re new to the neighborhood)

3. walking to the front and ringing the doorbell over and over again. I didn’t stay in the front because I had no leash for the dog and had to leave her in the back. Our gate was broken at the time, and I was afraid she’d get out. Hence the back and forth displayed in the texts.

4. walking to the fire station across our alley to see if anyone was there. Not sure what I thought they could do, but their door was also locked.

5. I couldn’t find any rocks, but on the side of the house, I found a plastic round disk that I hurled up at the window. While this method always works in ’80s movies, it did not work in my reality. NOTHING COULD WAKE THIS MAN.

So, after an hour and much pregnant sobbing, I called a locksmith. I thought I had pulled myself together, but the dispatch lady was very nice and I broke down as I was giving her my address. Neither of us commented on the fact that I was a mess.

I then made my way back to the front with dog in tow. I kept her on my lap while I waited, sent my last text message (my phone was almost dead by this point) and tried calling one more time. Nope.

640px-AsleepAround 10 minutes later, the locksmith got there. He was cute and young and I was very conscious of my gorgeous nighttime outfit. It took him another 20 minutes to open the door. When I told him my husband was upstairs sleeping, he was shocked, then nervous. “I hope he doesn’t wake up and think I’m breaking in,” he said. “He will never wake up,” I replied.

$53 and a Coke Zero later, the locksmith was gone and I was in the house and making my way to bed. My head hit the pillow at 2am.

The next morning, I heard him flush the upstairs bathroom and wondered what he must be thinking. He stuck his head in the doorway to my office and said very quietly and seriously: “I am so sorry.” We both burst out laughing.

Because what else can you do?

Sure, I had moments of dark thoughts while I was stuck out there, but I never asked for a hero. I’ve got young, studly locksmiths for that. And I know this isn’t some harbinger of horrible things to come. He’ll be there, just like I will. Our baby’s cries will be much louder than our puny doorbell and will penetrate through to sleeping beauty. I’ll make sure of it. Unless he locks me out again…


2 Comments on “Daddy Dearest”

  1. Susan Demers says:

    Ok. So I am telling you this for your own good although I never confessed to anyone else before (except the involved family members, of course.)

    On my very first gram babysitting assignment, my only child and her husband (who is not an only child and who thinks my child is spoiled and I that am to blame!) were convinced to entrust their precious three week old miracle to me for a brief two to three hour stint. For the first hour I sat nervously next to the baby monitor listening to the miracle breathe. Then I decided I needed a bottle of water which is kept in the extra fridge in the garage.

    Now you see where this is heading….

    Yes, someone (the new grandpa-errrg) worried about that precious child upstairs -locked the door leading to the garage-which to the best of my knowledge could NOT be locked and had NEVER been locked before. Now I found myself trapped in a dark garage lit only by the fridge light and trying to: A) get back in the house or B) figure out where the Genie opener for the garage door was hidden. Ultimately, I stumbled upon the door opener and made a break for the neighbors because I didn’t even have a cell phone on me.

    Third door knocked on was the charm and they let me in to use their phone-stocking feet, wild hair, lawyer gray suit and quivering panic in my voice…

    Of course, no one with a key was answering their phone-they were escaping for the first post-baby night out-and I was lucky enough to actually know my daughter’s neighbor-thank you community theatre-and this wonderful woman actually talked me down enough so that I could figure out that there were professionals to be called. And kiddie rescue is their stock in trade.

    Learn from this, my children:

    Have strategic key locations before you need them. (Especially with newborns because even laissez faire folks get super protective with precious cargo involved!)

    Discuss the door lock protocol. (Especially with newborns because…..)

    Believe in locksmiths (They have seen it all, only get called in a crisis anyway, and have to have one of the coolest jobs on the planet-rescue with no flames or shots involved. Believe.)

    Have that Pop-A-Lock number in your cell phone and write the boss about how wonderful his cute guy is. Trust me, babe, you were adorable in your wellies with your baby bump and you can be the best letter in his personnel file which would not be a bad result for you.

    As for your husband, I know him, and the last laugh will continue to be yours-I give you even odds that he may never go to sleep again!

  2. Oh man. The baby will either fix or exacerbate this problem.

    When my first was born, a not-to-be-named friend gave my husband this advice: don’t wake up with the baby because if you do, your body will get used to that. If you don’t, your body will get used to sleeping through the crying and you’ll be golden.

    Make him get up a few times! Train that boy! But in the meantime, hope he enjoyed those Zs!

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