Brian and I just ate a huge and delicious meal to celebrate. Please join me in wishing my wonderful husband Brian a very happy birthday. Indulge me by listening to a little story. A story about Gustavo.
When I had my first child, I attended a new mom’s support group at the 14h Street YMHA when my baby turned 6 weeks old. It was such a pleasure to be able to vent about how hard it was to nurse, to get any sleep and how we weren’t getting enough help from our partners. We were finally in a safe place where we could talk about how lonely it was to be feeding the baby in the middle of the night, all alone in the dark. It just felt good to bitch in a room filled with other women who were in the same boat, validating our angry and justified feelings of disappointment and anger.
Until she spoke about Gustavo.
Across the circle in which we all sat with our fidgety infants, a woman spoke up about how she wasn’t feeling angry at all. Her husband woke up in the middle of the night, each time she nursed, to massage her neck while she fed her baby. He got up and helped her every single feeding. Every. Single. Feeding.
We all clammed up. We were shocked and embarrassed, having thought that it was a typical new mother experience to have an unhelpful partner. Until we learned about Gustavo.
I dare say that many of the woman in that group went home that day and went OFF on their mates.I know I did.
“WHY CAN’T YOU BE MORE LIKE GUSTAVO???”
Gustavo became a household name and the men were pissed. Who was this Gustavo, ruining their peaceful homes?
Well, even today, 16 and a half years later, we still joke about Gustavo and what he signified in our early lives together. The perfect partner.
Please let it be known that although Brian may not have gotten up every time I nursed, or fully appreciated the difficulties of the never napping children while he was at work in all those infant years, he has far surpassed any kind of Gustavo in all our years of marriage. He has been nothing short of the most doting and caring father and the best supporter, protector and friend I could ever have.
Happy birthday, Brian!!! I love you so much. Now, please give me a back massage. I’m serious. Give me a back massage.