Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Bachin’ it with unGuy

This past weekend Aspen was in San Diego for a dental conference, which meant that unGuy and I got to hang out together for a few days. I was looking forward to this for weeks (not the ‘Aspen-leaving’ part, but the ‘spending-some-quality-time-with-my-son’ part). I get the impression that many dads dread playing Mr. Mom any longer than they have to. But unGuy is such a good little dude that I don’t mind the poops molded to his butt crack or the errant projectile squash spit-up. Other than that, he’s a pretty low-maintenance kid. I took advantage of our time together by planning a couple excursions for the weekend. Saturday we went snowshoeing at my ‘secret spot’ near Empire. It’s becoming not-so-secret lately as it was the most people (6) I’ve ever seen on this trail in one day. However, we passed many of them soon after starting and spent the rest of the afternoon on our own. I carried him in a Kelty Kids Journey backpack, which comes with a mirror that you can use to see how your little passenger is doing. I used it a few times when things got quiet back there. We started at about 8,900 feet and were just above 10,000 feet at the turnaround point (about 3 miles in). UnGuy fell asleep on the way back, so I knew he was comfortable.

Sunday afternoon I stuffed unGuy in the BOB and went on a 12-mile run around the neighborhood. A lot of snow had melted in the past few days, and the winds were incredibly strong. One gust nearly stopped me in my tracks. Fortunately, we bought a shield for the stroller, so unGuy was fully encapsulated. I walked a decent portion of these miles in an attempt to keep my HR below 140, but even that was tough when the route got muddy. UnGuy barely made a peep during the 2.5-hour jaunt. I peeked through the shield once, and he was playing with his foot.

Aspen was scheduled to arrive at DIA shortly before 6PM, and I thought it would be cool to surprise her at the airport. She missed unGuy terribly, and I figured it would take away her misery as soon as possible. When I got to the airport, I put him in the BabyBj√∂rn (facing forward) and made quick strides to the reception area in the main terminal. I was on time, but it appeared that her plane had also come in early. I nervously paced around the escalator exits hoping I would catch her before she went to the baggage claim area. Soon a glut of passengers burst forth, and I recognized Aspen walking nonchalantly with her boss, who saw me and directed her attention my way. Our glances met and she scurried over to me with tears forming in her eyes. I unclipped unGuy from the harness and handed him to her as the days, hours, minutes, then seconds of separation culminated in an outburst of emotions that only a new mother can appreciate when reunited with her child after some time apart. I began to cry, too, and we stood there in a group hug, isolated from the urban commotion around us, as bachelor’s weekend came to a memorable close.