Welcome Home by Lick the Fridge

Topic: Rain

I walk through the corridors of the hospital with a car seat in each hand. In each car seat is one of my children. They balance me. They are three weeks old and they are leaving the NICU. We are coming home as a family for the first time.

A NICU nurse and my wife walk with me. We are all happy and we are all smiling. My wife and I are happy because our twins our finally coming home. Our around-the-clock babysitting service is over, and we our now full time parents. The nurse is happy because it is her job to be happy for people like us in situations like these. She’s good at her job.

I am proud as I walk down the halls of the hospital. I am the first man to ever become a father. I am special. I have a brand new identity, and while I have no idea what I am doing, I have accepted my new role.

Carrying my children on either side of me gives me strength. I carry them with ease and grace, and I feel powerful. I show how capable I am. I am not boastful or cocky. I am responsible. I am carrying no more than ten pounds on either side of me, yet I am triumphant and proud as if I am carrying the world. Which I am.

Battling the pride and the happiness are feelings of uncertainty and doubt. These feelings all mix together inside of me and I become overwhelmed. I begin to cry. Tears run down my face, and I am unable to wipe them away. I look straight ahead. I look down on either side of me. I am openly sobbing now. I am not embarrassed, and I don’t try to stop. I know it is the right thing to do. And though I’ve never been in this situation, it feels perfectly natural to let it all pour out of me.

I look at my wife and she is crying too. And she’s smiling. We don’t say anything to each other. There’s nothing to say, really. We don’t need to talk about it. We know why we’re crying.

We get to the backdoor of the hospital and we go outside. The sky is dark and the rain comes down in torrents. Rather than feel gloomy, I am lifted by the thought of what the rain offers. Rain gives living things the opportunity to grow. It seems fitting that it is raining as we bring our children home for the first time.

We drive through the city. The rain is unceasing and so are my tears. Despite my tears, I try to turn my thoughts from the emotional to the practical. We have been parents for three weeks. And we have not had the full responsibility of being parents. The doctors and nurses have taught us so much, and now our apprenticeship is over. The time for us to take care of two tiny humans all on our own has arrived.

The rain ceases as we come off the bridge. The sun emerges from behind us and shines the way toward our home. I have stopped crying and I have begun to speak excitedly about our arrival at our house for the first time as a family of four.

As we pull into our driveway I know that one adventure has just ended. And I know that many more adventures are about to begin.

4 Responses to “Welcome Home by Lick the Fridge”
  1. Kevin says:

    That’s a beautiful story, Jared. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Beautifully written, my friend.

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