"I think you grew last night." I don't know what made me say it. Hundreds of weekday mornings had passed without my saying anything at all. If you're a parent who routinely gets your children up and out for school, you'll recognize the sameness, how all the mornings that have come before all but bleed together into a mass of unpleasantness, of yelling to get up, eat breakfast, get dressed, stop dawdling and find your own shoes for a change, a miserably breathless swell of activity entirely contained in a witching hour between 7 and 8am, the worst hour of every weekday, day after day. But right now, at 7am, before the nagging and rushing starts, I scoop my hands underneath my five-year-old son, still light enough to lift from his bed and suspend without a lot of effort, and I stretch out his body like he's a cat at a cat show, and I say this to him, and he is more than half asleep, but I say it again, feeling his arms and legs straining as he gives a big stretch. I get him to give me his breakfast order and set him down and have already forgotten this moment as I head to the kitchen. A few minutes later I'm about to carry his breakfast out to the dining room table and yell for him to get out of bed when I realize that he has, uncharacteristically, already gotten out of bed. He has pushed back one of the swinging doors to the kitchen so he can stand with his back against the wall and measure himself against the last greasy pencil-mark we made on the wall, to see how much he grew.
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I drank my wife’s breast milk in Italy, cleaned breast pumps in 11 different states, and helped my wife breast feed our son in 17 different countries around the world during our son’s first year of life.
Our family travels a lot. In fact almost 40% of the year we are away from home either for business or pleasure.
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