Travel Often

“I see my path, but I don’t know where it leads. Not knowing where I’m going is what inspires me to travel it.” — Rosalia de Castro

Love Deeply, but Laugh Along the Way

"Happiness is only real when shared." - Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild

View Marriage as an Adventure

"Love is a flower which turns into fruit at marriage." ~Finnish Proverb

Fuel your body with GOOD (It's the only one you get)

He who has health has hope; and he who has hope has everything. - Arabian Proverb

Open your Soul to Motherhood

A Grand Adventure is About to Begin - Winnie the Pooh

A New Kind of Love is Born

Mothers hold their children's hands for a short while, but their hearts forever.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Introducing Your Dad - Month 5

week 19

Your baby weighs about 8 1/2 ounces, and measures 6 inches, head to bottom — about the size of a large heirloom tomato. The hair on her scalp is sprouting. This is a crucial time for sensory development: Your baby's brain is designating specialized areas for smell, taste, hearing, vision, and touch. Some research suggests that she may be able to hear your voice now, so don't be shy about reading aloud, talking to her, or singing a happy tune if the mood strikes you. 

Me at 19 weeks!
Baby K,

This is a letter to you. I wanted to talk about someone super special - someone who is dying to meet you.

He's your dad, Karl.

He felt you for the first time on Sunday. We'd come home from a weekend at your Grandpa and Grandma Koester's cabin (yes, your dad got another buck!) and we both wanted to take a nap. We were lying in bed, watching the Minnesota Vikings lose badly and then started watching the Chicago Bears win big time (I'm totally fine with you becoming a Bears fan by the way), and you started kicking (or punching) - I haven't figured it out quite yet.

I had your dad place his hand on my belly and you kicked right away. You literally took his breath away. He gasped. And then this huge smile broke on his face (kind of like when I told him I was pregnant with you). And I looked over at him again and a single tear spilled down his cheek. The moment was really something special and I could just tell he was thinking all sorts of things about you.

Sometimes he talks to you too. He tells me to butt out of the conversation, but I have a tendency to eavesdrop because your dad makes me laugh. Just warning you but soon he'll start making you listen to Weezer now that he knows you can hear. He really can't wait to meet you. Sometimes he says he's scared - I say that too. But that's because we don't know what to expect. Will you cry all the time? Will you sleep okay? Will you throw up all over your dad....causing him to throw up all over me? He kind of doesn't like puke very much. Or poop. But I think he's past the poop part thanks to your mom and Gpa-Bear in Illinois. Honestly, we don't know what's to come and that sometimes can be scary. But what we do know is we're pretty excited to meet you and can't wait to see where things go. I want to know who you're going to become.

You should've seen your dad when we were registering at Babies R' Us. Off he went to the Lego's and then off to the Matchbox cars. He was pulling me in every direction like he had sacks of gold to show me. He couldn't believe all the cool toys out there. He was going on and on how he can't wait to build the best race tracks and Lego houses with you.

Yes, I do have to remind him that you could end up being a girl. And that's going to be just as awesome because, well, I'm a girl. And your father loves me very much. Sometimes I can just tell by the way he looks at me or how he calls me right away when he's done with work to let me know he's coming home and to make sure I made it home safe. I like that. Plus, the cool thing about being a girl is I'm really close with my dad...we even played catch quite a bit in the yard together. He even told me the best days of his life were watching me play volleyball. Mine too. start...I met your dad at work in 2006. It was funny how that all started. I really think God was behind it all because how does a girl from Illinois end up at an engineering firm that tests soil in Bloomington, Minnesota?? So because of how we met and how I feel about your dad, I have to believe God does work in all of us and wants the best for us. That freewill stuff kind of gets in the way sometimes though. We like to make our own choices and decisions and sometimes they are the wrong ones and lead us in directions we never intended to go. But if we keep trusting in him, we get back on track and good is waiting for us. Sometimes it's easy to forget about God, but he really does know best. That's the greatest lesson I can teach you. Believe in him and you will get very far.

Now...getting back to your dad. He was shorter than me and had long hair. Sometimes I wondered if he had just rolled out of bed, walked into the shower and forgotten to dry his hair when I saw him walking the halls at work. He'd usually have a coffee cup in hand and baggie jeans with these crazy funky shoes. Sometimes the coffee cup had breakfast in it... Ramen noodles. But there was something about those eyes of his. They sparkled. And then he laughed. That was it for me. That, and there on his face was the cutest dimple ever. I knew I had to know him.

Your mom and dad's first night out - a work party in 07
Soon we began talking and your dad sure talked about your grandpa like he was the President of the United States. I could tell he loved your grandpa very much. Then I started sharing stories about my family and how I loved to travel with your Uncle Mike and how your Uncle Mark was always making me laugh with all his crazy shenanigans. And how lucky I felt to have such a close family, but how crazy we could be when we all got together. I couldn't quite explain what was happening inside me, but I knew I needed to know your dad more and more. I couldn't get enough of him.

He also started making all these weird origami things...and putting them in my cube. I'd get a new one every day. Pretty soon I had a collection. I never had a guy pay so much attention to me in such a unique way. I don't think the CEO ever understood (as the bathroom was right next to my cube and he was able to see your dad's art collection every day)...or else he thought I was just another weird engineer who was fascinated by origami.

The origami your dad made me at work
Then your dad and I sat by each other at an event that the company put on. We had to dress up all nice and your dad could've sat anywhere at this really fancy golf resort, and with anyone, but he sat by me. And we sat close to one another and everything in the world felt really great. I couldn't stop smiling. We couldn't stop talking. We even sampled each other's food. There was so much to talk about. And he looked good that night with his long hair and suit coat. I didn't want the night to end. But it did.

We were both dating these duds at the time, so we couldn't really start anything more. So we continued having really great conversations with one another.

Then one day my shower broke. The dud I was dating told me to go look it up online and figure it out. Your Uncle Mike was off traveling in some exotic place, so he was out. And then for some reason I decided to call your dad. And he took me to Home Depot. He even came into the town home you are coming home to after you're born and fixed the shower.

So then I had to ask could I resist a man who dropped everything for me? And was so nice to me? And was handy? I knew I had a small window of time to share how I felt, so over a slice of pizza I told him if he were single, I'd scoop him up in a second.

I wasn't very nervous like I would have been with any other guy. The words felt right. And he seemed to like what I said. But a couple weeks went by and nothing. (Well, he did lead me on a scavenger hunt around the office to some dead roses, but that's a story for a different time.) Then Valentine's Day came. My doorbell rang and your dad was on the front steps. He asked me if I'd go out with him that Saturday night. I invited him in but all he wanted to do was ask me on a date in person. So I did what any women would do...I fell in love with him. And I have been ever since. Over and over.

I just want you to know how lucky you are to have a dad like Karl. He is amazing. And I mean amazing. And he already loves you and hasn't even met you! He's working extra hard right now so his career takes off in another year or two. You should see all the cool legs and arms he makes for people. He really is talented. I can't wait for you two to meet and to watch the bond grow between the both of you. It's going to be fun to watch. Your dad and I love each other very much and can't wait to have you join all our fun adventures...cuz we have many!


P.S. Oh, and this is the big buck your dad got. Probably the biggest he'll ever get. He even made the front page news. Your dad's kind of a big deal....

Your dad with "The Freak"