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Feels like Groundhog’s Day today.



Liam wakes up, crying. We give him a half bottle, not too much because he’ll probably throw it all up. Ten minutes later, he’s asleep again. Figuring I might as well get up and get some work done, I go into the kitchen and make myself a cup of coffee.



I’m at my desk. As I’m writing down my goals for December, one of which is to finish the current version of Rokuban once and for all, I hear the pitter-patter of Liam’s feet.

“What is it?”

“Mama. Mama.”

“Where’s Mama?”

“Mama ne-ne.”

“Mama’s sleeping?”

“Un.” (Yes.)

“Do you want to lie down with Daddy?”


I pick Liam up and take him back to the futon. He insists on lying just to my right. That’s where Eoghan usually sleeps and in Liam’s mind it is a position of privilege. I scoot over so that my wife Rié is on my left, Liam on my right, and Eoghan beyond him.

Before long, Eoghan wakes up, finds his position being usurped by the upstart Liam and begins kicking and pushing. I put Liam back between me and Rié. After a while, both boys calm down and fall back asleep.

Or so I think. As soon as I sit up, Liam opens his eyes and gives me a look as if to say, “Where the fuck you going?”

I lie back down and rub his back, run my fingers through his long, curly hair. Every now and again, he looks to see if I am still there. When he’s finally snoring, I head back to my office.



My coffee is getting cold. I’m getting cold. The wind is still strong outside. The windows whistle with excitement. I hear the bedroom door slide open, then closed, the hallway door open, steps, then Liam’s voice, “Daddy. Daddy.”

I open the door and find Liam standing there, rubbing his eyes, his hair wild.

“Hold me.”

I pick him up and take him back to the futon. He’s asleep in no time.



My coffee is now cold. I’ve been up for an hour and a half and all I have written is: “Finish Rokuban.”


Sighing, “At this rate, I won’t be finishing anything.”

I pick Liam up and feel his diaper. Full tank. I get a fresh diaper and carry him back to the bedroom.

The nice thing about Liam is that for a two-year-old he is remarkably meticulous. He closes doors behind himself, he puts the caps back on the pens when he’s finished drawing, he returns his plates to the kitchen after eating, he throws his diapers in the garbage, he goes to the toilet himself, and when he’s done removes the potty trainer and puts it back in its place. Eoghan, on the other hand, has a habit of tossing everything onto the ground.

So, I change the boy’s diaper and lie down next to him one more time.

“Liam, baby.”

That means Liam wants to lie down on Daddy’s chest. He crawls up on top of me, yawns, and falls asleep.

The boy is getting big. In the past few months, he grew about four or five centimeters. As he is lying on my chest, his toes touch my knees and the top of his head is only a few months of growth away from touching my chin. I give that mop of hair of his a kiss, then slowly lower him down to my side.



I make myself a fresh cup of coffee and head back down the hall to my office.

We have finally managed to get through the night without either of the boys vomiting. Progress! Now to make some progress on my writing.



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