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Luke Melia

Life As You Know It

My friend The Mighty Geek told me last night, “Your blog is becoming a daddy blog!” And it’s true, I’ve been pretty focused lately on figuring out what Jeanhee and I have gotten ourselves into, how to help the munchkin grow up happy and healthy, and how my life as I knew it fits into all of that.

Tonight, I watched a short film called “Life As You Know It” about some creative parents of my generation and how they’re navigating these waters. It’s part of some advertising campaign by Audi, but it’s an interesting, entertaining piece despite that. So, if you’ve got 15 minutes, check it out. To find it: click “3 Filmmakers. 3 Journeys.”, then “View Films.” The one to check out is “Life As You Know It” by Kristina Robbins-Higgins.

I haven’t watched the other two films. If you do, and they’re worth checking out, leave a comment.

Google Year End Zeitgeist

The 2005 Google Year-End Zeitgeist is a good read. The WMD stuff on the World Affairs tab was particularly interesting.


The Times closes out a piece on infant sleep habits and co-sleeping with this quote.

“With no intended disrespect to Dr. Ferber, I do not need his opinion to validate my view that co-sleeping is the healthiest, safest and most natural sleep situation for my child,” Kristi Buxton, 29, a microbiology researcher in Portland, Ore., wrote in an e-mail message. “The individual who has most influenced (and radically changed) my beliefs about co-sleeping is my child.”

The article also notes that co-sleeping is common practice in most of the rest of the world. Perhaps it is the American obsession of rugged individualism that makes parents want their kids capable of putting themselves to sleep through the night in their own room from as young an age as possible.

One explanation cited for the recent resurgence of co-sleeping (the supposed resurgence at least — no statistics in the Styles section…) is that working, breastfeeding mothers are better able to get sleep while still feeding the baby. That’s definitely true for us.

I wonder if that’s the core of the co-sleeping thing – nourishment vs. teaching independence…. Both worthy and laudable no doubt, but when I think of my little one, nourishment and health is Job #1, while teaching independence and character in general comes after that.

Thanks to daddytypes for the pointer to the piece.

Sweet Charity

I do the bulk of my charitable giving at year end. Here’s this year’s list. If you have other ideas for a worthy cause I missed, I’ve still got a few days and a few dollars. In no particular order…

The new hat

Chiara and her new hat
Thanks for the supercool hat, Matt. –Spacegirl

Away in a manger far, far away

...where a very young woman...

Although I agree with Penn Jillette on the subject of God for the most part, it doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate a good scifi nativity scene when I see one.

Penn Jillette: There Is No God

On NPR, Penn Jillette has a spoken essay titled “There Is No God.”

I believe that there is no God. I’m beyond atheism. Atheism is not believing in God. Not believing in God is easy — you can’t prove a negative, so there’s no work to do. You can’t prove that there isn’t an elephant inside the trunk of my car. You sure? How about now? Maybe he was just hiding before. Check again. Did I mention that my personal heartfelt definition of the word “elephant” includes mystery, order, goodness, love and a spare tire?

There’s no flying spaghetti monster, either.

A week of fatherhood

Chiara at 14 weeks

I’m halfway through a two week vacation from the office, during which I’m watching the baby while my wife goes back to work.

Come the beginning of the year, a nanny (still to be hired) will take care of the little one during the workday, while my wife and I work to earn enough to pay for the nanny. It’s a dubious proposition, but it’s the one that makes the most sense to us.

In any case, I spent all this week with the little one, and it has been a real joy. I realize it’s pretty easy for fathers to never have that much concentrated alone time with their child, and I count myself very lucky.

It’s not all easy. The utter lack of productivity associated with taking care of a kid this age is hard for my achievement-oriented sensibilities to take. And there was one day this week when Chiara was just plain cranky, and that was tough. But as I told Jeanhee the other day, I feel sure that I will look back fondly on this time and thoroughly romanticize it.

There’s been a lot to love. Getting to know Chiara is really cool. The faces she makes when she’s tired… hungry… delighted… The long blinkless stares into my eyes that end only when her eyelids are utterly too heavy for her to keep open and she switches quickly from consciousness to sleeping… Wearing matching alpaca wool earflap hats to go grocery shopping… Watching her watch the world when we run errands, and seeing her delight multiple people each and every time we go out….

I worry I’m screwing up: not feeding her enough, feeding her too much, not keeping her warm enough, overheating her, emotionally scarring her, teaching her to be too dependent…

But really this week has been about falling in love with her again, just as intensely as the first week of her life. That, and being sure to keep her alive and in one piece until her mom gets home from work.

LukeMelia.com created 1999. ··· Luke Melia created 1976. ··· Live With Passion!
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