Yesterday I took my oldest daughter to the cardiologist. It was a rather normal visit for us. A long drive into the city of San Francisco, a quick trip up and over Divisadero, a miscommunication of our appointment destination, running with a stroller up and down Geary St, sweating profusely in a small dark room while holding a 5 years legs for an echocardiogram while watching Elmo's World. All in all it was a pretty normal trip. For us at least.
Taking a 5 year old to her cardiologist is a pretty normal thing. Hearing the doctor proclaim that she was born with a malformed valve and and hole in her heart leaves us unsurprised. And being told that the current leak between chambers of her heart is minimal only triggers to us that another tedious visit to the heart doctor is done.
On the way home we talked about what to get for lunch, how we planned on spending our upcoming vacation and which bathroom vanities we think would match the décor of our guest restroom. We've been through this too many times to get worked up over it.
Ask me if any of this would seem normal to me 6 years ago. Back then I thought fatherhood would be quite different. I pictured a walk in the park, play time in the sand box or wrestling matches in the living room. Heart surgery, sign language, echocardiograms and leg braces never seems to factor into the equation. Weird huh.
I'm comfortable with where I am. I love both of my children, but normal? Nothing in life is normal. Not even in a normal family. Whatever that might be.