ren is officially a week late. which at this point in the pregnancy means the baby is a 1/2 pound heavier…amazing that a little human is inside her belly growing at such a rapid rate and is so happy in there, s/he doesn’t want to come out.
we laughed as we sat there working on a 1000 piece panda puzzle, with the music of broadway hit ‘hamilton’ playing in the background, while listening to tai complain about not being able to do puzzles (as he’s colorblind, bless his heart). tai arrived late in the afternoon after traveling by bus from washington d.c. tai’s energy and spirit filled the room, as he leaned into ren’s belly and whispered, “hi baby, i missed you! you can come out now! your favorite uncle has arrived!” tai is the one who cried for ten minutes into ren’s belly when he saw her at riki’s wedding 7 1/2 months pregnant, and he’s also the one who cried during and after both his sister’s weddings. people say he’s my son.
tai in chinese means ‘strong, peaceful and serene’. he arrived into this world just that way. i barely made it to the hospital. i was in the doctor’s office having a routine exam, and she looked at me and said,’you need to get across the street to the hospital now, you’re about to have this baby.’ by the time i crossed the street, and into the delivery room, i was fully dilated, and tai flew out. he’s been calm and accepting, loving and kind from the second he entered this world, and opened his eyes to look into mine.
we raised our children to live their truths, their passions, to not have clothes or labels define them, to be loving and giving to the world, to work hard, and have compassion for those in need, to be grateful, to be productive and make a difference in the world, and above all else, to be kind and loving. tai perhaps has taken his lessons learned to the extreme with his long locks of hair, bearded face, and his tiny backpack that always includes his toothbrush, a washcloth, books, and one change of clothes.
he lives a simple life that he does not sugar coat. he loves children, animals, music and food. he works as a teacher in an under resourced school in austin, texas.
“yes, i’m now in charge of a bunch of middleschoolers. their official teacher quit because they are just a bunch of f – – – ers”…
“tai, you don’t mean that…” the mother in me cringed, as i’m a stickler for a clean mouth and insisted that my kids say, ‘shut the door instead of ‘shut up’ growing up.
“no mom, i do mean little f – – – ers…they simply are at this point in time.”
his view of the world ‘it is what it is’ keeps him calm and very easy to be around.
he proceeded to tell us that on the bus, “i kept smelling a wet dog. and i looked and looked for him (because he loves dogs) and then I realized it was me that i smelled!” oh tai!..
you will never hear him criticize or try to change others, other than to teach the young ones to use their words in kindness. his school’s mission is to ‘work hard, be kind. be a beacon.’
and that he is.