Oh, we’re all fine here, now. How are you?
Good morning, sweet peeps! It is a beautifully cool morning here in Nashville, where a dense fog hangs over the rolling hills, and my dogs have found yet another fascinating area in the yard in which to dig for buried treasure. I remind them constantly that they both need jobs to earn their keep, and since they have no formal education (or thumbs to utilize to hold a pen to fill out an application), they are probably trying to dig up some Civil War relics or long-forgotten cache of gold coins in order to assist me in keeping the veterinarian’s yacht full of gas. I like to encourage them to have hobbies as well, so the muddy noses don’t bother me, as long as they are not doing any recreational digging. We all earn our keep around here.
I’ve been off the road this week in anticipation of a little stork-delivered addition to our family. The preparation has been nothing short of a Doomsday Preppers episode, the differences being that instead of stockpiling K-rations and erecting zip lines for escape and living in constant fear over something that won’t happen (didn’t we build bomb shelters in the 60′s?), we are filling all available space with diapers, burp cloths, and look forward to filling our house with more love. I suppose there are other correlations in baby prep and doomsday prep. One tries to prepare for every scenario (especially first-time parents), yet there is nothing in the book that prepares you for everything. You also attempt to secure the compound, pre-pack travel necessities, and at some point, rather than fighting zombies, Mom and Dad become zombies with that every 2-hour feeding schedule.
My gracious and wonderful friend Phil Vassar has given me as much time as I want off the road to get the homestead situated, and I have a very competent sub filling in for me in my absence. His name is Rich Ross, and he is a great guy and a great player. Please treat him nicely.
I love getting everything together for this next chapter in our lives, however when the bus pulls out and I’m not on it, there is a strange, strange feeling that comes over me. Even more strange is the Friday or Saturday night, where I am supposed to be making loud noises, however, we end up making faces on the baby monitor. (And no, the night-vision setting isn’t creepy AT ALL…) I heard a lot of great reports from the weeks’ shows, so that is encouraging.
It’s pretty amazing and humbling the outpouring of support we’ve had in this journey, and we can’t thank everyone enough. As the finish line approaches (and a whole new, crazier, life-long race begins), there are some things I think I have learned, missed, or solidified that I want to share with you, whether you are parents, thinking of being parents, or humans in general.
First, your partner, husband or wife, is awfully important in the process. You can’t really do this without the other person. Women, please be patient with us – we have no idea what it’s like to carry around 35 extra pounds then try to lose it (except Drew Carey), and we certainly don’t understand everything that is racing through your brains during this time (and most other times). BUT we WILL get it together, in our own unique style, and be there for everything you may need. Even that extra scoop of ice cream.
Guys, the women-folk are smart, even if they can’t play Space Invaders as well as us, and they really do have it together. On the surface. Truth is, they are as scared as we are to have a child. As long the parties at the party talk it out, it’s gonna be OK. Just be there, for everything. Your new favorite expression should be ‘I got it’. If she drops something, needs food, has her hands full, wants a pizza, whatever, You got it. Don’t forget that statement.
Two of my three brothers have kids, and I’ve been secretly taking mental notes on the whole thing, and again, no amount of prepping can prepare you for projectile fecal release at 3AM. I’ve seen hardened war vets cringe at the mystery liquids that come out of small children. I feel that as a touring musician I’ve been training for these moments all along. We keep odd hours, experience random loud noises (feedback and wanky guitar solos), having to be quiet at certain times during the day (keep that bunkhouse quiet), and sometimes don’t get to shower for days because we’re taking care of many other things. I got this.
So we hope to be with a youngster soon. Again, thanks to our wonderful friends and musical friends out there for wonderful gifts and blessings. If I don’t write for a while, you’ll understand. I am also most likely to be a social media prude and keep the baby pictures to a minimum. I’ve already attempted to break the posting urge on two of the ‘big three’: food and pets. The third will be the hardest, but understand if I want my baby’s web presence to be his/her choice. And I’ll totally cave once we dress the child up as Baby New Year and Diesel as Rudolph.
So there you have it. The latest and greatest. Be safe out there in these last few weeks of summer. It ain’t over yet, folks – get outside! I’ll be back on the road before you know it, with pictures of old buildings, old airplanes, and old cities. It doesn’t sound very exciting when I say it like that, does it? I have to go now. There’s a sale at Babies-R-Us, which is not far from Guitar Center, but somehow I don’t think a new guitar is going to happen. Good thing I can order online…(push present???)
See you at the changing table!