You know, lately I think Carter gets the short end of the stick.
It's not totally unexpected, because once Bennett got diagnosed with his Infantile Spasms and the Cortical Dysplasia, we kind of focus all of our attention lately on beating the living snot out of Bennett's disorders, and we don't spend nearly enough time on Carter, our first born son.
So this week, I am going to focus on Carter. It's appropriate, since yesterday, Sunday, was his 5th birthday.
Five years. Wow. Has it been that long? Has it been that short? It seems like only yesterday and yet it seems like decades ago.
I remember, back in those days, I was working at Palisades and spent a lot of time on our message boards there. Two of the good friends I made at the time were Greg and Maria Whitehead, two Muppet fans, who kept in touch, got involved in the Muppet action figure line and became close to me personally. As Palisades faded out of my life, so did many of those relationships, but they are often in my thoughts.
Maria once copied down every post I had made about Carter on that message board and presented it to me as a gift. I was floored by that. She sent it over, in a word file, and all those posts about Carter I now have saved. The message board died when the Palisades website died, and all those memories would have been lost if not for Maria's unbelievable generosity and thoughtfulness.
Thought I'd share a couple of those posts here...sort of an introduction to Carter. These posts were made during the first year of having Carter around. I have no idea what photos I actually showed for these posts, so I am just picking some of my favorites from that first year.
Written on the Palisades Message Board July 12, 2004
Breathtaking...I shall call him...Mini Me...
Just could not wait to share.
Today at 9:05 AM, Carter Maximus Lilly entered the world weighing in at 7 pounds, 1.4 ounces and measuring 19.5 inches. Talk about a Weekend Swag Run.
I am just beside myself with awe over this tiny little person. I think I stared at him almost all day. And he's already peed and puked on me. How cool is that? Almost as cool as the fact that during the C-Section I made the critical mistake of looking. Yup...ran out of the delivery room like a school girl and passed right out. By the time I came to he was being cleaned up, so I eventually went in to say hi.
Here's a few peaks at the little critter, the absolute crown jewel of my collection.
Written on the Palisades Message Board October 13, 2004
For those of you who do not have kids, it's startling how fast they change the first few months. Not just in size (Carter's poundage has more than doubled since birth) but also in behavior and attitude. He does more, he thinks things out more...he looks at stuff longer and with a look in his eye as if he is trying to figure stuff out.
It's very interesting...and with that, more pics...
Written on the Palisades Message Board October 29, 2004
Well time to get this thread rolling again with some new pics...and what better way to begin than to show my son in his Halloween Costume. It's a dalmation, but it is way too much damn fun to call him a cow because my wife gets all freaky about it and it is oh so enjoyable to push her buttons!
Here he is...ain't he GORGEOUS?? Damn I love this kid...
Written on the Palisades Message Board December 20, 2004
As we enter into the last couple of weeks of the year, I often find myself getting very reflective. No, not turning into metal and having people see their face in my ass, though that does sound like a wacky superpower to have...no I mean introspective....looking back on the year I had and looking forward to the year ahead.
I don't make resolutions, but I do make goals. Smart dude I know taught me to do that yearly. This year, accomplished some, fell flat on my mirrored buttocks on others.
So the purpose of this thread? Gonna cover some highlights of the year and make some goals for next year.
First question. What highlights did you have personally in the year 2004? You can feel free to answer these questions as well...
Here's my Top 5:
5. Finally paid off every single credit card and use the cards only for gas and stuff and pay the balances every month. Now to tackle that student loan...
4. Became a homeowner for the first time in my life. Not that there's anything WRONG with that!
3. I finally took the plunge and started seeing a therapist. Funny story that. I have been, or should say HAD been, having anxiety attacks for almost two years...never knew what it was, looked for all sorts of physical reasons for the symptoms, never found any. It was only after Carter was born and I had the "big" one that I was able to figure out that it might be anxiety of some sort. Saw a head shrinker, been seeing him ever since, and I have never felt better, been more positive or had a better outlook on life. And I haven't had a full-blown anxiety attack since.
2. Paid off my car and got a new ride...something I have always wanted to drive. A Toyota 4-Runner. 8 Cylinder. That is a fun beast to drive.
1. July 12th, 2004 was the single most life-changing day of my 37 years. Carter, my son, was popped into the world.
Interesting stuff. I was more of a liar in those days though, not as open and honest, because I was (after all) writing on a company website and as a member of the company. I did not pass out from seeing the C-Section, I had an anxiety attack that sent me to the floor. First time ever. Life-altering moment of clarity after that too.
Those first 5-6 months with Carter were really something special. Changed my life in a lot of very dramatic ways. For me, as an abused kid growing up living in fear all of the time, I never wanted kids. I was terribly afraid to be the like one of my two fathers, both bad. But as it turned out, I adapted. Am I a great father to Carter? No, I wouldn't say I'm a great father. Am I a good father? Yeah, most of the time. Could be better, and much of that is due to the current issues with Bennett.
But I'll always keep trying.
2004 though...wow what a year with the little man. I did a LOT of photo-manipulations of him, some funny little pics, and a fun composition that I printed and framed and gave to both sets of grandparents. Let's close today on those fun images, shall we?
By the way, that Daily Joy Journal thing? I haven't forgotten it...but all this week is positive so I don't think I need to actually call OUT that these qualify as Happy Nuggets.