Thursday, December 31, 2009

Re-introducing Tony Kontzer, father

About 13 years ago, when my first wife was pregnant with my first son, Jackson, I had an ambitious plan to write a book about the male experience in baby-having. I was jotting down notes, carrying a tape recorder, hoping to offer up a new kind of parenting book--one that doesn't tell you how to do things, or what to expect, but just entertains you with tales of a bumbling father's attempts to do good by his wife and kid.

Not surprisingly life (and a very challenging marriage) got in the way, and all these years later, those notes and recordings remain a pile of unfulfilled plans and broken promises to myself. (I've got a lot of the latter.) But now, with a second lease on life--an absolutely wonderful new wife, Sarah, a new home, and a 9-day-old newborn son, Max--I've got a second chance to make good on all those intentions. And thanks to the advent of blogging, which didn't exist during my first go-round, I can set out to achieve the same set of goals, with or without the dedication it takes to put a book together, and benefiting from the more mature perspective I can bring to the topic in my mid-40s. Blogging--the greatest thing ever to happen to non-finishers.

Of course, I'm a bit late on the pregnancy front, but I'll hope to jog my memories of the past nine months as I post entries here. I'll revisit the themes that followed that moment last April 7 when Sarah and I first found out she was pregnant--from the pre-natal visits, growing belly and late-night cravings, to the search for (and remodeling of) a home, and finally, to the amazing first moments when Max entered the realm of the living, as Sarah likes to put it. But the focus will be firmly on my experiences as a second-time dad who's had 12+ years to learn and grow as a parent and person. (OK, so it's more likely to be the tales of a 40-something idiot making the same stupid mistakes he made the first time around--let's not get technical.)

A quick look at the clock tells me I've already missed the first quarter of my beloved Missouri Tigers' bowl game, so I'll close out this first and last entry of 2009 with an image of a days-old Max being slurped by his beside-himself-with-love daddy. Welcome to this crazy ride called life, my little one!

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