Evolution of a Father, Family


When Archer was born Hal was between jobs. Money was tight and we lived meagerly on unemployment checks and my two part-time jobs copy writing for an adult website (chicka bow wow) and hosting an online chatroom for (sick bodied, healthy minded) kids. We were stressed as hell about money, exhausted from staying up nights with Archer, totally lost. But we were together. Even as we turned our backs to one another and crossed our arms.

Still, Hal and I were determined to make it work, to fall in love with each other as a threesome. The mother, the father, the child.

We were a family from the outside. Over time to build an interior: a family with an inside was our plan. We prayed for the strength to dig into each other with our shovels.

Those first two months were made up of some of the most difficult days of our lives. The manic depression of new parenthood, the rollercoaster of I love you, I hate you, I want to leave you, fuck you, fuck you over, kill you, hold you, please no don't let go. Hal's temper was wild then and I couldn't pull my head from my hands. He yelled. I cried. He yelled. I cried. Restart. Go again. Skip a turn.

Hal longed for a job so he could support us, said he hated to feel like he couldn't provide. I refused to understand, preoccupied with my inability to breathe in an apartment the size of my fingernail, my shame for the screaming matches that occurred in front of Archer, our perfect new child.

It takes time to become a family and we were no exception. It might have even taken us longer than normal. Even though we were together every day, every night, every hour in between for the first two months of Archer's life. The hardest months. Months starved of sleep and good hair days and cigarettes when all I wanted was to chain smoke cartons at a time. Sneak away behind the bleachers and scream.

We would eventually hold each other's hands and hearts, shatter one another to pieces, then glue each other back together again, like new, but improved. Much improved.

But not without a fight or hundreds of them.

I remember one fight in particular and how disappointed I was that Hal refused to wear Archer in the Baby Bjorn. I hated him for it. Because all the other dads seemed to be wearing their babies wherever we went and why can't you be more like them, huh? Why do you have to be so... the way you are?

"Because it makes me feel weird, okay?"

And even on the bad days, when I thought I hated Hal, couldn't possibly stand to be married to him for one more minute let alone a life, I'd see him with Archer, see him as he truly was. Remember why I fell in love with him. Why I married him in the dark. Why we decided after weeks of deliberation to bring a child into the world together.

With Archer, 2005

Why we were going to make this work. Why we had to.

If it wasn't for Archer, Hal and I would have broken up years ago. We remind one another of this all the time even though we don't like thinking about it. It helps to know that once upon a time we weren't so happy. Puts things into perspective, places blessings in our pockets and stars in our eyes.

If it wasn't for Archer, there would be no Fable.

No story with a moral and also no girl. I whispered this in Fable's ear last night so that she might know how far her parents came. Just like I tell Archer, if it wasn't for you? We wouldn't be a family. You saved us. Thank you.

Those two months out of work were two of the most important months of our lives, chaotic but also important because it was in those months that Hal became a father. And it was that father that brought the mother in me back to him, kept me from running away, him from slamming the door. We're all in this together, take my hand.

"It takes dads longer," he said, "to really fall in love."

He said it again, hours after Fable was born.

"Dads don't fall in love immediately. It takes a minute or two I think."

When Fable was born Hal had to go back to work right away. Fable was born at 3:23 am and five hours later Hal was in his car on his way to The Valley, because television shows have deadlines even though babies are only born once. After work, Hal returned to the hospital, his eyes heavy, dark. He handed me a sandwich and I handed him our daughter who he held and gazed at and smiled down on, her hand wrapped tight around his ring finger. And I wondered if he was in love with her yet.

How long does it take? Does he feel it, now? What about now? Is he there yet?

The first four plus months of Fable's life Hal was working, a relief financially and also quiet. With an easy baby we had no sleepless nights. No fighting. No threatening each other. No question marks haunting our dreams, our sentences. Such is life without the stress of the unknown. Hal had a job lined up for when his job ended and we were in love again, knew each other well enough to talk without screaming, touched our pieced together flesh, appreciating scars.

"We're so lucky," we said to each other. "New baby and you're not unemployed this time. New baby and we're older."

Except the job fell through last minute because television shows have a tendency to forget to keep their promises. And Hal once again was unemployed.

A part of me was afraid. Of the fighting, the arguing about money, the frantic Craigslist searches and me emailing every magazine trying to sell ideas to out of order machines. Sorry, we're not interested. We already wrote that piece. Something like it. Try again. Come back later. No solicitors.

And then I stepped away from my fear, hands in my lap. I looked away long enough to watch Hal cradle his daughter in his arms. He didn't have to go to work, kiss her forehead as she slept, to say goodbye. He got to be with her, bond with her, much like he was able to do with Archer.

Blessings in our pockets...

Such is life with the stress of the unknown. Except without the stress part. Have we changed so much that we can wake up well-rested? Lean on each other instead of our parents, our friends we once confided in when we couldn't confide in each other. Express ourselves without I hate yous because he understands that I need space and I am aware of his need to provide, his feelings of weakness and vulnerability when he cannot.

Has it become possible for us to speak without raising our voices higher and higher until we all fall down? Can we press our faces to one another to catch a buzz? Inhale without exhaling smoke?

It seems that yes we can. We do. Cause you've come a long way, baby.

Six weeks of Hal's unemployment later I have stopped wondering if he finally fell in love. One day his eyes just sparkled.

With Fable, 2009

He was there yet, serenading Fable with his guitar in the middle of the night because she doesn't go to bed until we do.

Not without a fight or hundreds of them.

Just like Hal rocked Archer to sleep those early months. When his full-time job was understanding what it meant to be a father, self-taught like he had known the secret all along. Like he still does.


Now, pushing Fable's stroller behind me, behind Archer who insists on being the leader and "follow me, everyone! Into town where there are smoothies." All of us in a crooked line, one after another.

Don't worry, I'm right behind you.

We can survive for another few months on what money I make and unemployment. Confident that a job will find him or us, that we'll soon be back in the thick of our normal routine. For now, though, there is much to be celebrated in how far we've come, the sparkles in all of our eyes even as we brace for the possibility of darkness. We have owned the night before and can once again conquer it if need be. The blessings in our pockets are like fireflies.

Look for lemonade and silver linings. And don't forget to tell him how much you love him for wearing the Baby Bjorn this time around.


We're all in this together. Take my hand.

GGC

123 comments:

bitemycookie | 9:42 AM

i love you too, hal.

lauren | 9:52 AM

beautiful beyond words.

Joy | 9:53 AM

Thank you for this bit of inspiration. My husband and I have been going through some major financial struggles lately, like the rest of the country, and everyday I can see how it's taking its toll on our marriage. We have 9 month old that I've started to think of as glue. She's the glue that holds us together on some days. In my mind I'm confident our family will survive but it's hard to remember that when the emotions are hitting you in the face.

Thanks for sharing your story. It's inspiring to know that with love things really blossom even in dry times.

Erin, Nick and Merrick | 9:54 AM

....and I am crying.
You are so fucking gifted.
And equally blessed.

Nick does the same to me- when I see him playing with Merrick (our son.) When I see him reach for a friends crying baby, to comfort a child that is not even his, this is the man and the father I fell in love with.

Chrissielicious | 9:54 AM

So beautiful.

Nani | 9:58 AM

I LOVE your blog! Thanks for such amazing inspiration :)

Rebecca Faulkner | 10:00 AM

Um, that is totally a Chococat blanket in the last photo. I know because I have the same one!! <3

samantha jo campen | 10:00 AM

You're always good at making me cry.

My husband has been out of work since July and it is taking a toll on our marriage because of the financial stress. But he has been there for Theo (1 year) from the beginning and that is a blessing. Even with everything else going on, he has a bond with our son that most fathers don't get a chance to experience because they are at work.

We're thankful for that and remind ourselves that things happen for a reason.

Beautiful post.

Lesha | 10:00 AM

You've made me cry as well. Great story. Thank you.

I hope my husband and I can find our way to where you are so one day we can have our second beautiful child. Right now we're struggling too.

Loukia | 10:00 AM

Once again, you brought tears to my eyes. I think you're so amazing and I LOVE LOVE LOVE reading these very insightful posts because so often I can relate. Thank you for being brilliant.

Bridge | 10:00 AM

Beautiful and inspiring. It's so good to look back and see how far you've come.

Victoria (In the pink) | 10:07 AM

Yep, you made me cry too... those days are so difficult - you brought back a lot of memories. Beautifully written. Thank you.

Jenn | 10:07 AM

this was beautifully put! it was like reading my thoughts on the first 5 years of my marriage. seems we are all in this together. this was the best piece ever!

@sweetbabboo | 10:12 AM

Beautiful, and so very true. Your honesty regarding those early months helps bring peace to my heart, knowing we weren't the only ones who screamed at each other in front of the baby. You are lucky to have each other and such an honest relationship. I wish you neverending happiness.

-Abby
@sweetbabboo

Cate Subrosa | 10:14 AM

You fill me with a bittersweet mix of fear and relief that it's all going to be ok.

Your husband looks a little bit like my husband.

You make it all so real.

AnonMom | 10:15 AM

Beautiful post. You're a lucky woman and so are your kids, to have a solid family. I know those tears of frustration and fights you talk about when Archer was born. My husband, unfortunately, didn't get his act together after our son was born, and we're now divorced. I admire you and your husband for soldering through as a family unit.

Tricina | 10:24 AM

That made me a little teary! What a good story.

hoppytoddle | 10:28 AM

It is so great that you can step back & find the last little drips of water in the glass.

When Andy was here I realized how if I had married the first guy I was engaged to there is no way I'd have anywhere close to the security I do & that the only reason we are okay is because he works nearly 80 hours a week. How stupid of me to take so long to see it. He might not be wearing bjorn's, either, but we're working on it. He DID let me name MiniMe after my Gram.

Will be keeping y'all in our thoughts.

MamaNeena | 10:35 AM

Thank you for reminding me to stop for a moment, hug my husband, and thank him for being exactly who he is.

Prasti | 10:42 AM

i don't know if i'm just 30 weeks and hormonal, but your post made me cry. so beautiful. thank you for reminding me just how much i love my husband for who he is.

Jenny.Lee | 10:43 AM

This brought tears to my eyes. I needed the reminder too of how blessed I truly am.

Meg | 11:09 AM

I am crying right now. This mirrors so much of what my husband and I went through when our daughter was born, but I'm not gifted enough to put it into such beautiful words. Thank you for telling my story, along with yours.

And, Hal? Way to go.

Meghan | 11:18 AM

Beautiful and inspiring...I can't wait to find someone that I can share a life and a family and the good and hard times with...you are very lucky! :)

Sandi | 11:29 AM

Another beautifully written, heartfelt post. This is why I visit, you are amazing!

mom2nji | 11:29 AM

I had tears in my eyes from the pic of Hal singing to her on...
You have a beautiful family and a wonderful way with words.

Fraulein | 11:31 AM

Just awesome. Thank you for articulating so beautifully what so many of us have gone through with marriage and new parenthood.

Christie Pits Blogger | 11:31 AM

How beautiful:) May you have many years of joy with your family and may you always take care of each other:)

Megan | 11:46 AM

Thank you so much for this. As a person in very similar circumstance for my first child, and now hoping to try for my second, this is reassuring and wonderful. Congrats on your beautiful family.

Liz | 11:48 AM

Thank you so much for this post! My husband and I are graduating from law school this May with $200K in student loan debt, I'm the only one with a job yet, and it doesn't pay much, especially after loan payments (or for the forseeable future). I know that the stress of this is weighing on both of us - I'm more vocal about it, but I know that he feels the burden heavily, especially since it will force us to postpone starting our family and I'm already 27. I needed to be reminded of how this stress teaches us, and how we can made it, together (and maybe even have a baby).

Marie-Ève | 11:56 AM

You made my day.

*mary* | 12:06 PM

Perfect timing for me. Thank you

Amber | 12:12 PM

beautiful, rebecca! once again. :)

Lauren | 12:16 PM

You're writing is entertaining, heartfelt, and so damn real. As a newlywed facing financial struggles as well, you really bring to light so many thoughts that I could never get out with such eloquence. Thank you, once again, for sharing your world- struggles and all- with us and making us feel so much less alone.

Lady | 12:21 PM

Thank you. All too often people are afraid to be open and honest about their vulnerabilities as a couple. So I sit and stare at them in wonder and think 'How come YOU don't have problems? How come YOU'RE so secure in your love and relationship?'

You and Hal and this post give me hope that Hey, I'm NOT alone and we CAN do this and it IS worth it. So thank you, thank you, thank you more than you can know.

The Eadle Family | 12:24 PM

That's very sweet. I think the first 4 months were the toughest for us. The first 2 months our daughters were in the NICU, and I was severely depressed. And the next 2 months was trying to get along while being full time parents.

Anonymous | 12:31 PM

Beautiful post. You are in (or near) Hollywood. Put those babes to work in the pictures. Then the two of you could coauthor a memoir about being stage parents...

Decor Addict | 12:46 PM

Hey Rebecca,

We are 6 months pregnant with our 1st child, and although i'm excited about our new daughter or son, i'm absolutely terrified at the same time.

Thank you for writing this. It helps to hear from someone that has experienced both sides of the coin when bringing a new person into the world. It certainly helps me/a total newbie to be realistic about whats to come in the next few months!

Petunia Face | 12:48 PM

What a beautifully honest post on fatherhood. I'm going to make my husband read this tonight. And then have sex with him.

Carrie | 12:49 PM

So incredibly beautiful. Love reading what you write, could only be better with being able to turn paper pages while doing so :)

Amanda | 1:12 PM

One of my favorite post from you. You are wonderful and have an amazing family.

Joanne | 1:13 PM

ok, so i'm delurking because well, mostly because i feel like it, but also because your words were so touching and we've met now so i feel compelled to compliment you out loud :-) beautiful words and beautiful thoughts.

Anonymous | 1:39 PM

A lurker to your blog. Always intrigued and enlightened. For this piece, I just found myself overwhelmed. A beautifully written post which so thoroughly and eloquently depicts the truth of real, beautiful love. Thank you for that. Thank you for exposing your life to us. It's thru writings like these that one can believe in the honesty of love.

Michelle | 1:41 PM

This is probably one of the best posts I have read. With all of the issues that we are going through right now your words truly make me want to try harder. I am going to try harder only knowing that things can be better and they will get better...eventually. Thank you for this.

Shash | 1:48 PM

I love this post and I love you guys. Thank you so much for opening this window into your lives. Our lives are just that much more enriched for it. :)

See you in Chicago?

Anonymous | 1:54 PM

That first picture of Hal with baby Archer looks like he's nanoseconds away from devouring his firstborn.

Anonymous | 2:05 PM

Beautiful. I was near tears the whole time.

Ray | 2:12 PM

Wow, this was such a beautiful and powerful entry! I know people probably tell you this all of the time but you are a hellavue writer. Wow. I love your sense of hope and honesty. That too is a beautiful thing. Hal, Archer and Fable are SO very lucky to have you; as a wife and as a mother. <3

I also love how through all the fights and struggles you and Hal are still together. That's real love. Making it through the rough times and deciding to stick through it no matter what happens. No matter what happens in the present nor in the future. That's love.

7aki Fadi | 2:17 PM

What a beautiful post. Truly.

Christi | 2:59 PM

"the blessings in our pockets are like fireflies."

Beautiful writing. Thank you.

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 3:29 PM

Thank you all for your kindness and lovely.

moodychick | 3:32 PM

Not fair. I am 6 months pregnant with a 2.5 year old, a precarious financial situation (okay, who's not right now really) and a stagnant relationship. You have me crying like a teenager who was just dumped. Weeping more than I do during those damn Hallmark commercials. Sobbing like days past when I was wasted, spilling my guts out to some poor sap who just wanted to get laid...
It's an ugly cry on the outside, but so, so healing on the inside. Thank you. I feel like I just took a deep, spiritual breath and can look through the fear and see the hope and joy and love that is my own family.

Beautiful, honest writing.

Jaimee Drew | 3:58 PM

Thank you for sharing this- you've really captured that precarious little place that makes us families, not strangers with children. This was really lovely.

nic | 4:18 PM

thank you for sharing this. i feel like this, often... with a difficult child, and an employed husband who has a demanding schedule. i admire your bravery to be so publicly honest about your marriage.

it's a beautiful thing.

muffintop | 5:02 PM

could barely read this through my tears... you put words to what i couldn't. thanks.

SPITsisters | 5:31 PM

Just beautiful.

amber | 5:36 PM

i cried so much that it took me twice as long as normal to read this post. it was beyond beautiful and touching. i cannot wait to watch my peter with our new daughter (our first child).

mydaydreamnation | 5:50 PM

"We would eventually hold each other's hands and hearts, shatter one another to pieces, then glue each other back together again, like new, but improved. Much improved."

this really hit me. as a mother-to-be who is currently unemployed and getting by on one income, i know this story well. it's a story of heartache, gratitude and overwhelming emotions.
the hard times are hard, but they make us love each other with a great deal of honesty. i think if my husband and i didn't have our screaming arguments, our expressed doubts that we can survive and get by or our little nagging feuds over paying bills and penny-pinching, we wouldn't know the real love that exists between us. and it's that love that you give to your children; a really beautiful cycle that start with the two of you.

thanks for this post. sorry for the long response, but it made me happy that others go through these rarely discussed areas of life!

EdenSky | 5:56 PM

holy crap...would comment, but...crying.

Motherhood Uncensored | 5:57 PM

for all the fear and loathing about the surprise #3, she saved us. as a couple and as parents. individual and together.

and for that, we are both grateful.

xox

jjlibra | 6:44 PM

beautiful post. thank you for sharing. i am in the middle of hating my guy right now because he just plays call of duty all day (he works at night, i work in the day) and will sit while i clean around him. even if i ask him to help with something he can't complete the task- give our five yr. old a shower? sure! right after i stall and grumble and take an hour to get it started and then guess what! i'm only gonna wrap her in a towel and send her out to you so you can finish the job! he's an ass right now but you make me look forward to a time where i might like him again. thank you.

jjlibra | 6:45 PM

oh and have you ever seen The Story of Us? i cry the whole way through every time i see it because it is so real.

Kelli | 7:06 PM

That was just beautiful. I have a boyfriend who continually amazes me every day on his ability to be a wonderful father. Thank you for that amazing, and honest post.

Social Gracious | 7:26 PM

What a beautiful commentary on the hard work that is marriage. Kudos. Keep working.

Desiree Fawn | 7:53 PM

so beautiful.
your family is so strong & lovely ^_^

dgurl7 | 8:02 PM

thanks for being vulnerable. it's important.

Anonymous | 8:11 PM

thanks for really being just like the rest of us. don't ever change.

Anonymous | 9:21 PM

I admire your ability to be honest and still remain respectful toward the people you love. This is a beautiful, raw post. Thank you.

Anonymous | 9:29 PM

beautiful post. I've been there too!

mames | 11:09 PM

arg, just the best thing to read ever after a rough week of an injured husband and sick family. thanks for reminding me that we are in thsi together.

nicoleantoinette | 12:21 AM

With all sincerity, this is the best post I've ever read. Not just on your blog. Ever.

She Likes Purple | 12:49 AM

Oh, Rebecca. How I needed to read this today. I'm six weeks in to this mom gig and I've cried and screamed more than in the five years that came before (the five years I spent with Mike before we had Kyle). This was the most beautiful and perfect thing I've read in so long. Thank you a million times for it. And then thank you again.

helena | 3:41 AM

beautiful.

pamela | 7:13 AM

i guess we're all revolving around in this world experiencing similar things. it's so nice to have technology in order to touch other people's hearts.
i guess my question is, how? how did it change? how were you able to look at each other after hateful things and come back? i guess i ask because i'm in the midst of 'should i stay or should i go?'
one of our biggest problems is family interference. his family is TOO involved in our life. and i feel trapped by their boundries. we have had one session of therapy, which he protested. but i'm hoping it works, that we can make it work. i want our lives to grow together not apart, as a family. but i want us to be an independent family away from the control of his... i feel overwhelmed.
thank you for this post. it gives me hope.

Missy | 7:14 AM

I have to quote this part:
"It takes time to become a family and we were no exception. It might have even taken us longer than normal. Even though we were together every day, every night, every hour in between for the first two months of Archer's life. The hardest months. Months starved of sleep and good hair days and cigarettes when all I wanted was to chain smoke cartons at a time. Sneak away behind the bleachers and scream."

Define a "normal" amount of time to become a family. Because 12 years and three amazing kids later, we still work on it everyday. You have no idea how much this post today resonated with me; it was US when we had our first daughter, 11 years ago. And again when we had our son, 9 years ago. Things were easier when we had our baby, 7 years ago. But it will always be a work in progress. Always. And I'm damn thankful to have the chance to keep working at it.

Ali | 7:51 AM

Beautiful, gorgeous, lovely post.

Anonymous | 7:51 AM

Heartbreakingly beautiful. Thank you!

diana | 9:18 AM

Rebecca,
Your post is a blessing in my pocket that I will take to a therapy appointment in just three hours. I'm just so worn down from fighting, and need help. While my guy and I don't have kids together, I do have one from a previous marriage-- a marriage that wasn't given the chance to be saved by our blessed boy-- you've helped me think that this new relationship can be. That all of our truly heinous words to each other can be overcome. Thank you.

I don't comment on blogs (guess I'm a "lurker"), but this was just too serendipitous not to respond. You are an inspiring woman to me, Rebecca, even though we don't know each other. I hope you have a great day!

Sincerely,
diana
(Albuquerque, NM)

Estelle | 9:20 AM

"Blessings in our pockets." Yes, indeed. Everything you said was beautiful and true. Thank you for that. Reading what you have been through as a family reminds me that I'm not alone in any of the struggles I face as a wife and a mother. Thank you, thank you, for your continued brave honesty.

shoutingforha | 9:48 AM

Beautifully written.

My hubby was unemployed for several months right after our son turned one. While it was a hard season, I am so thankful for the time that my two guys were able to spend together. So few children get that kind undivided attention from their fathers. Their bond is incredibly close as a result.

This time together is a gift. Treasure it.

Kendra | 9:48 AM

I love this post! There aren't many couples married for more years than you and Hal that can HONESTLY say these words about their mate....that KNOW their mate like you and Hal.

Good for you! Congrats!

Jaime Bear | 10:06 AM

It's always reassuring to know that other people go through the same things you're going through. My husband's been having a hard time bonding with our new son (almost 1 month old) because of his work hours, and I tend to really resent him for that. I had this preconceived notion that he would automatically be a great father from day one and never need any orientation into fatherhood. Thank Hal for me for stating the seemingly obvious. I guess I really need to lay off him and just let it happen naturally.

Anonymous | 10:15 AM

I'd be so interested to hear Hal's version of this story. I rarely hear the man's perspective, and think it would be equally beautiful. I'm a huge sucker for a man who gushes over his children. Does Hal ever post to your blog?

Amanda | 10:56 AM

Such an amazing post, and one that resonated volumes.

My husband and I had a VERY similar experience, and reading this was like taking a look back and seeing how far we've come. There were days when I thought, "what the hell did we do?"
There were days when the yelling was so loud, I feared the police would be called.

But we stuck it out, and now we're in the same place you and Hal are right now.

Love your blog, love your family, love your words!

Liz | 11:07 AM

That was like manna from heaven. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

Britte | 11:44 AM

That is a beautiful story and it warms my heart when I read how Hal and you pushed through the problems and made it through together. I often feel that far too many couples today don't understand what work goes behind a relationship and a family, and so they simple give up. Move on. You and Hal didn't and I have immense respect for the two of you for it.

Bobbie | 12:13 PM

That was a wonderful post. Well done both of you for coming through the other side of some very tough times

Trenches of Mommyhood | 12:32 PM

You are an amazing writer. Rock on.

Heather M. | 1:07 PM

I am wondering if you mean to make the rest of us cry. Beautiful!

Twwly | 1:22 PM

Very similar experience here. Not the work part, but the relationship struggles through #1 kiddo. Who brought us #2 kiddo. Who made us a Family. Great post.

Great 1st choice for your book club. If I had a Twitter account I would be all over it. I have amputation tools tattooed on my forearms with "Geek" & "Love" banners, as well as Arturo tattooed on my right calf, a tattoo that I traded my tattooer the end of my ring finger for (in a the teeniest bottle of formalin!) That makes me sound crazy a bit, typing that out? I never write about that. Anyway. The finger was off already, I didn't see the need to keep it. Ha. (Swear I'm not a loony).

Ever read Lullaby by Chuck Palahnuik? Another fave of mine, right after Diary (my all time fave Chucky P book). Fear of Flying, Erica Jong. The Contortionists Handbook (Craig Clevenger). Great books.

bluejeanamy | 3:40 PM

thank you for this.

i think it made all us future moms a little more confident that we'll be able to pull it together and come out on top, too.

Erin | 5:24 PM

I can't tell you how much it helps to know that somewhere out there another baby was born where the Daddy was unemployed and everyone was just waiting for something to start, until they realized that in some ways, it was a big, big blessing.

We have been/are in the same situation, and now I'm just grateful for the time we've had together, and for the help that I've had in the first months of my son's life. My husband has a job now, working nights, which SUCKS. But at least it's something, and something better will come along, and then we might lose it again. But I guess what matters is now, and making sure we're not worrying it away.

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 9:18 PM

Thank you all for sharing your stories. Wishing you all happiness and good fortune. Thank you as always for your kind words and support.

Anna | 1:27 AM

This is so wonderful. Your authenticity is soul sustenance for me. Thank you!!!

Christopher | 4:06 AM

Great writing. Hang in there all of you!

Anonymous | 6:14 AM

Thank you so much for this post. I had my first 7 months ago...just as the market tanked. We call her "Our Depression Baby." Putting aside the stress out in the world (which hasn't helped,) it has been a roller coaster, including me feeling like my husband just wasn't bonding. It is happening slowly now, and I remember hearing you allude to how hard things were for you guys when you first had Archer and wishing you would write more on that. I think women are under enormous pressure to always act as if new motherhood is non-stop miracles and fabulousness. More like non-stop panic attacks and flabulousness. Snerk. Anyway, this helped me feel like we aren't alone and/or unusually dysfunctional....

Jessica | 6:35 AM

Rebecca you always know what to say. For real girl. This is my story...sort of. I married my husband after nine months of dating and we found out we were pregnant within weeks. Then we had our first argument. And they kept on coming. Then I lost my job and were were surviving on one income and we had this little person who never slept and took all my energy and he seemed akward when he held him and I felt so alone and bitter and we seemed to hate each other. And then we moved to a new state, near our family, and I got a new job and our life just started to work. Our son grew older and he loved his daddy and his daddy realized that little guys need their fathers too. SO we made a new baby and he is two now and everything was just easy and fun and we really are a true family now. So yeh...thanks for understand me without even knowing it.

vertigobcooks | 1:23 PM

Okay, totally crying right now.

I met my husband in October 2004, had our first date on April 1, 2005, got pregnant in June of 2005 (YIKES!), got married (in Vegas too) in July 2005. We had our son in March 2006. Started our own business, got sued by my mother-in-law, had our daughter (2008).

Yesterday he had to have surgery, a cancer scare.

If you let it, the fear, the uncertainty, the bad stuff can draw you closer to this stranger than you have ever been to another human being.

He is fine, there is no cancer. There is a beautiful marriage, two AMAZING children, a crazy dog, and more love than you can imagine, than I could have EVER imagined.

You really nailed it, but then you always do. Thank you.

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 5:17 PM

Wow. I'm so glad your husband is okay. Commence counting blessings, right? Kiss.

Anonymous | 8:41 PM

This is a beautiful post, thank you.

robin | 9:08 PM

Jesus Christ, do you know how to make a person cry!

Jennifer (txmomof3) | 8:09 AM

Absolutely beautiful post. The writing, the photos, the honesty--all just spot on. Thank you for that. I just found your blog and plan on returning regularly. In a time when we're all doing our mommy blogs, yours is unique and original. Kudos to you.

Sarah @ BecomingSarah.com | 9:27 AM

This is such a beautiful post. I have no words besides those.

hoskas | 11:28 AM

This is the most beautiful and poignant love story to Family that I've ever read.

Thankyou so much for sharing this.

Sonya | 12:07 PM

Wow, I adore you. So beautifully written.

It is amazing how everything happens for a reason.

Blessings to you and yours!

Sonya

The Panic Room | 1:01 PM

I have no idea how I missed this! It is so awesome to read this story. I got half way done and stopped because I want to read it with Cole tonight after LB goes to bed.

pandorican | 1:15 PM

Oh!((hugs))

Kate | 9:11 AM

trying not to cry at work, damn you!

just beautiful.

and do thank him for wearing that baby carrier. what a small, wonderful gesture signifying a change perhaps more significant to you than to him or vice versa, or maybe it's just unknown or unspoken changes that can move us the most.

Her Bad Mother | 12:43 PM

'blessings in our pockets'

crying here.

Heather | 2:38 PM

Love this so much! Thank you for sharing such hard times and making us all feel better because of them.
Good luck & blessings!

Dani | 10:14 PM

I'm honored to say I sold Fable's birthday sandwich to Hal. And the second I asked about the hospital bracelet on his wrist it was so abundantly clear how in love he already was. Beautiful story for a beautiful family.

Bar-b | 7:24 AM

this was truly beautiful.

I am disappointed with all of the romanticizing of the "family".

Thank you for letting us into your life, your family, your heart.

you are officially on my "this is how I blog roll".

PS...I LOVE THE NAME OF YOUR DAUGHTER! If I wanted a third, I would soooooo be stealing it. What's a little thievery amongst bloggy friends :)

Monica | 5:53 PM

Wow - reading this was very powerful because it is so true. It does take time to become a family. Even after 15 years of marriage, becoming parents for the first time rocked our worlds. We have battled on and off for almost 2 years now. It's really, really hard. The sleep deprivation and the increased responsibilities of parenthood can bring you to your knees. I have never hated him as much as I have since we became parents. And honestly one of the biggest reasons I didn't leave him was because I knew I needed his help taking care of the baby and didn't know how I would be able to work and do it all on my own (bless you single parents). Our son really was/is the glue holding us together. And I try to remind myself that I did like him before and I am hopeful that we have turned the corner and that we will both like each other as well as love each other again. I don't know that our marriage could survive another child, but I read your blog and then I wonder....

Anonymous | 3:39 PM

thank you for this post. it makes me feel human, and less alone. my husband and i have been fighting eery other day... my son has just turned two months old... you've given me hope and i'm looking for the silver lining. thank you!

Jennifer | 8:47 PM

Beautiful post. Thanks for doing what you do. Supporting all of us Mommas out here...

Anonymous | 12:03 PM

You are incredibly gifted.

That you share that gift with us is a blessing in our pockets.

Girlbert | 4:52 PM

Thank you for giving me hope. We could all use a little hope right now, I think, some collective, positive energy to get us through the next months...

LOVE your blog.

Jessica O'Halloran | 3:19 AM

Tears rolled as I read this post.. So raw, so real and so many of us can relate. We're all in this together really is the mantra for every new family. Thank you for sharing.

Risa | 11:20 PM

I don't know if you read comments on posts this far back but I wanted to thank you... I reread this to remind myself that even though things are bad they can get better... if we try... we are trying to learn how to be a family... thank you for reminding me it's worth it to fight the good fight because I need to be reminded tonight. Thank you.

feastafterfamine | 11:02 AM

oh my goodness.
this is breathtaking in its simplicity and raw honesty.
you are brave.
and your family is lucky.
thanks for reminding me to redouble my efforts on the home front.

mrs. q. | 1:11 PM

Ack. Sniff. Sob.

This is just what I needed to get me back in the Christmas spirit. Thank you.

freckletree. | 8:10 PM

Fucking beautiful. Thank you so much for reposting this. It is so much what I needed this week (year).

liana | 6:29 AM

Thank you, how beautiful, and spot on, as you always are. And as a re-post it couldn't be more serendipitous. I'm not sure our family is going to make it together through our (3 year long!) rough patch, but it is so good to be reminded by you, & everyone else, about our common human-ness in this crazy life of motherhood & family. Love & peace. x

The818 | 10:58 AM

I really needed to read this right now. Thanks.