Posts Tagged ‘ baby under construction ’

How We Told the Family

Thursday, April 15th, 2010

Something else I’ve learned so far about being an expecting parent: People are intensely, genuinely excited when they hear the news.  Now that it’s gone viral (facebook), I have been blessed with all kinds of encouraging messages.

As well as some that crack me up:  A friend from high school said I will be a “fab dad” and that I should have a diaper bag with FAB DAD written alongside guitar-shaped flames.  And my 7th grade English teacher said, “You are like a mom… with testosterone.”

That’s brilliant.

But before the news could go public like it has this week, there was a point in time where we had to find a creative way to break the news to our family first.  It’s not something we wanted to do over the phone, if possible.

Conveniently, we had already planned to spend Easter weekend back in my hometown.  Even more convenient was that my mom’s birthday was exactly one week after Easter Sunday, so we found a way to make her birthday gift the news of the baby.

My wife found a tote bag with an insert on the front for a photograph.  With the sonogram in that slot, as well as a “grandparents’ brag book” inside the bag, we had our strategy ready.  The trickiest part was convincing my sister that she and her husband needed to be there at my parents’ house as soon as we got into town that Friday night at 9 PM.  Fortunately, she didn’t question my shady ways too much.

After the usual “settle in” conversations, I handed my mom’s gift to her, which was inside a larger gift bag.  She lifted up the bag from the bag.  It took about ten seconds.

Then her face dropped.  And the tears turned on instantly.  As to inform my dad, my sister, and her husband, my wife announced, “We havin’ a baby!”

It was everything we had hoped for during the four weeks we had to wait to tell them.  We received our “new parents hugs” in a joyous celebration.

My sister, noticing that my dad hadn’t said a word, asked him, “What do you have to say?”

He responded, “Speechless.”  And a little later: “I guess this means we’re gonna be spending a lot of gas money driving back and forth to Nashville.”  That means he’s really excited.  And again with the convenience thing, our child’s due date is on my dad’s birthday.  No way we could have planned that.

My wife had mailed a card and sonogram picture to her mom in Sacramento, with “do not open until you call me” written on the envelope.  Fortunately, it arrived just a few hours before we told my family.  So both sides of the family were able to find out the same day.

It’s not the kind of news a person can just announce to their closest family and friends through a facebook status.  It takes strategic planning.

All pictures with the “JHP” logo were taken by Joe Hendricks Photography:



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