Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Future in Laws - the Atlanta Trip

April wasn't certain about telling her parents. Always the possibility of a miscarriage in our mind, and always the concern about raising some false hope, only to have it dashed.

We arrived in Atlanta that night, and her dad, mom, and little brother, Peter picked us up. April's brother is 11 years old, and the way she treats her brother is a cross between a big sister- a sister who is 11 - and a good friend. Seeing April with Peter shows me what a wonderful mom April is going to be. She can relate to him so well, so easily, and so readily. She plays with him, draws with him, and loves being around him.

When we got to the hotel I asked April if she had any thoughts about talking to her folks. "I don't know, Terry. I want them all to know, but I don't know."

The next day we went to her sister's home and spent the day relaxing until her brother-in-law and I went to play golf.

We were on the second tee when I asked him, "Can you keep a secret - nothing bad, a good secret."

"Yes," Bob said, "I can."

Bob and I just got along well. This was the second time I had been around him, and we were just at ease with each other from the start. I felt like I had known him my entire life, even though we just met.

"April is pregnant," I blurted out-- with a big sloppy smile on my face.

The smile went across his face like a large ocean wave. "Really?"

"She is, and I have never been happier in my life."

We talked about how he was just finishing his family- and I was just starting mine. Reverse from the way it is normally done.

"I have done everything in life that I could do for myself, and April feels the same way. Now I'm looking forward to a family. Kind of the opposite. April is a little hesitant to tell her folks though."

We chatted over a couple of golf holes and then I came up with an idea.

"Maybe I should talk to George (April's dad). I like him, and maybe I should be the one to talk to him and tell him."

"I think that is a great idea." Bob responded.

For the rest of the golf round Bob and I tossed the idea back and forth. Finally at the 14th hold Bob said, "You know, I think if you do that, it will take the burden off of April. I think it is the right thing to do."

Approaching the driveway April's dad was cleaning some stuff out of his car. I got out and asked if he wanted to show me the spot where he had seen some deer. We started to walk out and I asked him what it was like to be older and have Peter in his life.

"It is an incredible blessing. It isn't something I would have ever thought of doing, but it has added so much to Barbara and my life."

As we talked about the wonderful impact that Peter had on their life we watched nature. I looked up at him and said, "You are going to be a grandfather, April is pregnant."

"So that's why you asked about Peter."

"Yes, that. We are both very happy. We planned it, and we didn't know when the right time was to tell you, and I thought I should be the one to tell you. April doesn't even know that I told you."

April's dad is a kind, gentle soul. A sweet man, that has a lot of empathy and feeling. The type of person who from the first time I met him, knew I wanted to spend time with him talking and sharing.

"So, I gather you and April are serious." he smiled.
"When is the wedding going to be?"

"We were thinking in February, when you might be back. But don't feel as if you have to be there- or need to attend, that is ok."

"I hope we can be there," he said, with this reassuring smile that made my heart turn to a marshmallow.

We talked some more about life, and kids, and plans.

We walked into the house, and chatted for a bit. He then found an excuse to go to the grocery store with his wife. April, offered to go with them, and I held her back. I asked April to come outside where Bob and I were by the grill.

"April, I told you dad, he is going to the store to tell your mom."

I didn't know what to expect. April looked relieved, "How did it go?"

I related the conversation and how he was going to tell Barbara in the car.

"What should I do now?" April asked

"Go talk to your sister," Bob said.

So April and I found Kim, and brought her into the bedroom.

"What's this about," Kim asked. April looked at me.

"Your sister is pregnant." I said.

From there it was two sisters - -talking, chatting, hugging, and becoming closer as two could be.

A few minutes later George and Barbara came home, as we were getting ready to eat some dinner. Barbara came around the corner-- gave me a big hug,

"Congratulations on becoming a father," she said as she gave me a kiss on the cheek.

The rest of the weekend was a blur. April and I were so happy that those closest to us were now in the loop with our plans.

As George and Barbara took us to the hotel that night April said, "I didn't know how you would react, or if we should tell you."

"April," George said, "You are 35 years old. We are happy for you. We just want to know when the wedding is going to be."

I felt the warmth from George, Barbara, Kim, and Bob-- I was a part of the family, a welcome addition. But even more-- I felt this wonderful feeling inside-- April and I were starting a family- and our child was going to have some wonderful grandparents, aunts, and uncles.

"What are you going to do, April?" her mom asked.

"Well, my contract ends in March- and sometime I will move to Phoenix."

"You going to be ok?"

"Oh, this guy will take good care of me," she pointed to me.

The hardest part of the trip, was the next morning- when April headed back to Tampa and I was headed back to Phoenix. My lady was pregnant, and I wasn't going to be there to help take care of her.