Letters For Lucas has gone from what I thought would be a passing phase to an absolute necessity and something that I think about all.the.time. I enjoy writing more than ever and I am grateful for all of my readers and especially the comments that they leave.
This is my outlet and documentation of my son's childhood and my life as his mother.
I am proud to be apart of the mommy blogging community, look forward to the next year and beyond and I'm thrilled to have Lucas' dad guest posting here today for the first time.
I know that I rarely call you by your name, but since this will be printed and is somewhat permanent, I’ll refrain from calling you Babu, Bubba, Crazy Larry or P. Your mom started this blog as a creative and social outlet in the hopes of helping her understand and enjoy a new role in life, motherhood. In her early posts, she wrote to you. Things progressed to her writing about you. Shortly thereafter, she began to very bravely write about herself. While you will appreciate the first two formats, it’s in the third where you will get to know her best. I, on the other hand, am a private and emotional person who will always share with his thoughts and feelings, but I plan to do it discretely. I’m a reluctant guest here, but I love your mom deeply, so I’ll share with you, 110 confirmed followers and god knows how many unregistered lurkers, some things I know about being your dad.
I wasn’t worried when we brought you home from the hospital. With nearly twenty hours of classroom style preparation, immaculate transportation, fully outfitted nursery and a college fund in place, I thought my next job was to continue looking cool and hand out cigars. Somewhere between five miles from the hospital and five days of being home, I realized that I had studied for the wrong test, you didn’t like riding in the car, you didn’t want to sleep anywhere but in a swing at the foot of our bed, college was a long way away, nobody looks cool without sleep and none of my friends or family smoke.
Watching every single recorded minute of the three-week-long 2009 Tour de France with your newborn son is heaven on earth. From Saturday, July 4 to Sunday, July 26 we watched the top cyclists in the world ride over 3500 kilometers. With a coffee in one hand and my month old son (you) in the other, getting up at 4:30 has never been so great. During the four-hour broadcast I got to watch you wiggle, yawn, sleep and hang out while your mom got a few hours of uninterrupted sleep. In case the 2009 TdF ever comes up in conversation, please remember that we (you and I) decided very early in the race that it was naïve of Johan Bruyneel and Lance Armstrong to expect a talent like Alberto Contador to serve as domestique to the aged seven-time champion. Contador danced on the pedals like a full-figured kid chasing an ice cream truck and earned his rightful spot on the podium.
I will never, ever forget how I felt the first time you were injured and to make matters worse, it was my fault. You were about seven months old and were really starting to enjoy rough play with me. I would roll you around on the bed while you laughed and laughed. I would stand you on my chest and say “Lucas you’re crushing me” while you stared in awe. Then one day you were laying on my chest and I rolled you off onto the couch unexpectedly. You landed on your little hand and I heard a few cracks (worse than cracking knuckles, but not quite bone breaking) and then you screamed. I felt awful. Within an instant I thought of every parent on every talk show explaining that they would rather have 10x the pain than watch their child struggle through what they had been through. Thank you for forgiving me faster than you could catch your breath. You’re a big man little buddy.
I assumed more risk than I should have while participating in the Targa Tasmania and living to tell about it will make me a better father. My friend Nick asked me to be his co-driver in the 2010 Targa Tasmania. This legendary five-day rally in Tasmania consists of thirty-nine individually timed stages on public roads that have been closed temporarily for racing. You were ten months old when your mom and I took you to Syndey where we spent a few days as tourists. From there, you and mom went to New Caledonia to see her friends while I met Nick in Melbourne where we picked up the Porsche 911 that we had entered in the race. Nick and I had discussed ad nauseam how we were there for fun and how our overall time didn’t matter. That’s an easy conversation to have over a Subway sandwich, but when strapped into a racecar and staring at a time clock on the start line, that argument enters your mind about as often as gas mileage. We were fast, consistent and getting better everyday until our enthusiasm exceeded our skill. Late on a wet and rainy day four, we took a corner way too fast, ran out of road and hit at tree, head on. Trees don’t move. They don’t absorb impact like when you hit another car or guardrail. We walked away from that impact with our egos and wallets bruised, but our bodies intact. We were lucky. All I could do from that moment on was think about seeing you and mom again at the Sydney airport. With tears in my eyes, I waited for you to pick me up at the airport. Your mom didn’t quite understand the look on my face, but when I hugged you both the way I did, she realized the incident was worse than I had explained on the phone. I was lucky enough to learn that lesson without being injured. Not everyone gets that chance.
Lucas, I promise not to do really dangerous things anymore. I will eat well, exercise, have moles inspected and go to the doctor at the first sign of a problem. I will do my best to be around for as long as possible. You and your mother mean the world to me and I cherish the responsibility that is on my shoulders.