Wednesday, April 25, 2007
The Miles Files are broadcasting this week from Tokyo, the destination of my first business trip since Miles was born last November.
It's tough being away from Lisa and our little kodomo dragon (and no doubt tougher for Lisa while I've absconded from my share of parenting duties). But technology has narrowed the distance a bit by providing us with virtually free video-conferencing via the wonderful folks at www.skype.com.
So I get to keep virtual tabs on Miles' growth with daily two-way video feeds. The effect is slightly surreal, and I'm not sure Miles understands that the waves of pixels on the monitor in front of him somehow represent Daddy. But to me, he seems almost close enough to touch.
Posted by dgf at 8:08 AM
Friday, April 20, 2007
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
I am starting to fantasize about taking Miles to the local Crepe Cafe and enjoying dinner OUT as a family. Or perhaps visiting our favorite breakfast haunt . . . .or even running an errand to the hardware store or grocery store with Miles tucked into the Baby Bjorn. But alas, the tables have turned, no longer is Miles the prisoner, but Dean and I are prisoners of our infant. Dean's Uncle George poignantly pointed this out to us not long after Miles homecoming. How right he was...
Yes, we go for walks. Yes, we go to medical appointments. And yes, I attend two support groups (ok, maybe three); a Listening Mothers group at Swedish, an evening couples PEPS group and our ad-hoc NICU mothers' monthly get together. But there is something quite limiting about not being able to integrate your baby into society. When I find myself with him at the mothers' groups, he seems more real and more "normal" to me. I think what I am saying is that I am ready to break out of our bubble soon.
So when can I peruse the aisles of Whole Foods with Miles? When can Dean and I enjoy dinner out with our new baby in one of many of our local favorite restaurants? When can I remove the blanket from his head when I whisk him through doctor's lobbies? And when can we reconnect with our friends who have young children?
Soon, oh so soon. In no longer than a month we will be venturing out.
I can taste that crepe now with baby at our side!
Posted by dgf at 5:01 PM
Monday, April 16, 2007
One of the hardest questions about Miles for us to answer is one of the simplest and most commonly asked:
"How old is he?"
We typically pause and take a deep breath before responding. Not because the answer is really all that complicated, but because it's first necessary to think about the context of the question.
Our faithful readers will recall that Miles was born on November 18, twelve weeks before his estimated due date of February 8. Not being fully ready for prime time, he spent the next 83 days in Swedish Hospital, learning how to be less of a fetus and more of a baby. He finally came home on February 9.
Since then, we have learned to distinguish between Miles' "chronological age" (measured from Nov. 18) from his "adjusted" age (measured from Feb. 8). So if the question relates to how long we have had a baby, we would likely respond with Miles' chronological age (5 months). If it relates to Miles' developmental status, we are more likely to respond with the adjusted figure (9 weeks).
The adjusted age makes more sense in most contexts. If you're an innocent bystander trying to figure out whether or not to be impressed by the fact that Miles can smile or roll over, or even determine if he is an appropriate size, you're better off getting a simple answer: 9 weeks. If, on the other hand, you are a medical professional filing out an intake questionnaire, you'll hear the whole saga, chapter and verse. Everyone else gets a level of detail somewhere in between, depending on the circumstances.
We didn't hesitate to give Miles' chronological age to one questioner: the Internal Revenue Service. His long ordeal in the hospital is hardly outweighed by a tax deduction, of course, but we'll take it.
Posted by dgf at 8:09 AM