Monday, March 14, 2016

I found your collar

I found your collar
But I didn't find you
I sit by your bed
Thinking about how fast time flew

I refuse to clean my care 
Because it still has your smell
I tightly grip your ball
You would fetch when you were well

I see the park
Where we would chill
Everything keeps moving
My world stands still

I miss your wet kisses
Your crooked smile
It's been a tough year
struggling in denial

I just want to hug you
as tight as I can
I want to reach out 
as you put your paw in my hand

I know you are here
right next to me
Your furry chin
resting on my knee

I feel so selfish
cuz I want more
You gave me so much love
every time I walked through that door

And this too shall pass
Always stay strong
But I still feel the pain
Those sayings were wrong

Just know I think of you
Every single day
You've impacted my life
in every single way

You made me a better dad
And a better friend
You taught me to fight
till the very, very end

When you were in pain
you would never show it
When you were angry
I would never know it

I still have dreams and see your run
I wake and pray its true
But when I found your collar
I didn't find you

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Giants Win

I stand anxiously about 20 feet away from the TV. My wife intensely watches as she ties to multi-task feeding our almost nine month old baby. We know its close. It is actually going to happen. Is this real? It can't be. This is too easy. We should be there. And then it happens. All of a sudden, decades of waiting are over. Brian Wilson threw the pitch right by the helpless Texas Ranger and the San Francisco Giants can finally call themselves World Champions.

Chills run up and down my spine. My wife jumps up and down. We yell together, embrace, kiss. Our daughter looks at us with fear in her eyes. She doesn't know what is going on. I mute myself, go to pick her up and she begins her inevitable cry. I hug her. She is our little good luck charm. She had been waiting over 8 months for this! Holding her brings about so many emotions. All of a sudden, amidst all this joy, thousands of flashbacks race through my head.

I remember the first game that (I remember) going to. It was a doubleheader against Houston and Mike Aldrete hit a home run in the first game. Will Clark homers in the second game. I am an instant fan. I remember staying with my grandmother in the summer of '89 with the radio and Giants baseball to keep my occupied. That was really the year I learned baseball from Hank Greenwald and fell in love with the Giants.

But then I remember all the torturous moments. The Maldonado slide, the Earthquake series, the 103 wins and no playoffs, Paul O'Neil breaking up Garrelts no-hit bid with 2 outs in the ninth, Rod Beck beating us in the wildcard playoff game, Agbayani, Timo Perez, Jay Payton, the Marlins...twice, Jose Cruz dropping the ball, no pinch runner for Snow, Game 6. OOO gawd, game 6. But this moment, all of that doesn't get erased, but it makes this moment sweeter. I think about all those times where someone said, how many rings do you have? F U All, SF has one ring and damnit, it might as well be 20. I just know it is no longer zero.

Even more, I think about the friendships I have made, the bonds that have grown stronger through this great sport. I remember how excited I was to take Ava to her first game. Mary Anne goes to text people while I hold the little one. I needed a moment. I just sat on the couch, watched the tv and tears rolled from my eyes. Ava looked at me quizzically. I cannot help it. All the pain is over. It will never be this good again. Even if we win the next ten championships, it won't be this good. Ave then proceeds to slap the tears away from my face. I chuckle and she does it again.

I was able to share this moment with my wife and my child and I will never forget it. And we start planning going to the parade together. We finally, wisely, made the decision not to take Ava was with us. It was sad but it would be too long, too crowded and too smokey.

The scene at the parade was wild. Hundreds of thousands of people finding a way to be in the city. With so many people, you would think there would be fights. But everyone was so happy. It was an amazing feeling. Camping out at the Civic Center for hours was all worth it. The pictures in the paper are beautiful, but that feeling of being there. The feeling of joy. The accomplishment that this team made us all feel. The Giants captured all of our hearts. It was probably the greatest times I have ever had as a sports fan. At one point, I guess, I will have to move on, but I hope that time doesn't come soon.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Sunday, May 9, 2010


The past two days, I was alone with my daughter while my wife celebrated Mother's Day in style by watching her favorite group in Vegas with another mom.

I feared those two days because our daughter often only wants Mommy. I really can't blame her. But she was great those two days while Mommy was away but that doesn't mean it still wasn't hard as heck. I really don't know how she has done it because I know A could be a lot worse sometimes than she was with me. In fact, I know I could be worse than A and I don't know how my mom has been able to put up with me for 33 years.

Seeing MA take care of A the last three months has just made me grow a greater appreciation for what I have. I have never seen this side of my wife but it is beautiful. She has been a great Mom and it makes me more excited for the future because I know that MA is going to help make A the best she can be.

I really don't have the words to describe how great a mother she has been but to me this picture says it all...

Thursday, April 22, 2010


For all you Lost geeks, I ran across this picture on the internet...

I hope Hurley finds one of these!

Monday, April 5, 2010



Two months ago I was a nervous wreck. I knew at any moment my wife could go into labor. We had prepared as much as we could. All the classes and reading could only get you so far. It did help prepare us a little bit but when the moment arrives, everything we had learned was thrown out the window.


I am on my way to work when MA tells me that she is spotting and that she has to go to the nurse practitioner at her doctor's office. I turn around, take her to the nurse practitioner, and we are informed that it is a sign the baby is getting closer to saying hello world. The nurse tells us that its normal but to let her know if it continues. I go to work and after a couple of hours, MA calls again and we are back to the doctors office. Just days earlier, MA's doctor told her that she was probably a couple weeks away. We are still more than two weeks away from the due date but we know little Baby Padilla is already full term.


Spotting lessens but MA is a little more uncomfortable. She is having back pains that are causing her a lot of grief.


Back pain gets worse. At bedtime, she can hardly sleep. In fact, she doesn't sleep. I can hear her groaning and feel so bad for her. Woman are amazing. I cannot imagine going through all of this. I couldn't take being trapped in a cast for a month, much less having a baby changing your entire body and kicking you for nine months. It is the worst night of the pregancy. We do research and find that it could be like this for weeks.


It is hard for me to go to work because I know how much discomfort MA is in. MA has a stress test and is informed she is having light contractions every five minutes. She is told not to worry because the magnitude of the contraction is not yet strong enough to signify that the baby is coming. My sister comes over to San Ramon to stay with her just in case anything happens. I remember being stuck at work. It was a wet night and there were accidents all over the bay area map. I don't leave work until about 7:30 pm. When I finally get home MA asks for massages because its the only thing that distracts her from the pain. I massage her everytime she feels a "false contraction." After maybe half hour of rubbing a tennis ball on her lower back I start taking count of how often they come and go. She would tell me "now" wearily to let me know when to start. And right after I stopped she would tell me "now" again. I tell her, "MA thats like two minutes apart." But still the strenght of the "contraction" is the same as earlier when she was told they are supposed to be a lot worse. I just think MA can take a lot of pain. My sister is still with us and its like 10:30pm when MA calls her doctor and is told to just go to the hospital.

My emergency ready backpack is not yet ready so I run upstairs, throw some shirts, underwear, pants, pjs, and toiletries in a bag along with DVDs, an ipod and laptop to get through the night. We still believe we are days away from having a baby and we are just going to be sent home. Well, thats what I believe anyway. My sister heads home thinking the same thing.

We get to the hospital around 12:30 am. We check in and get a room. MA's doctor is called and a nurse walks in to check on her. The nurse checks how dialated MA is and the nurse says MA is dialated 8 inches! At that moment we realize THIS BABY IS COMING TODAY! I call my sister who just got home and tell her MA is in labor. My sister is shocked. And at that point everything is moving 100 miles per hour. The heart beat rapidly increases and we don't know what to do. We just have to listen to our nurse. She gives us all this paperwork regarding what they want us to do with our stuff and all this other stuff. I am just signing and trying to help MA sign. Then we debate for an hour whether or not to do an epideral. The nurses poke MA a half dozen times trying to hook up an IV and that is just getting us more nervous. They finally get it in. MA tells me to hook up the ipod but I can't find it. I end up just throwing a friends DVD in the laptop for her to watch. I try again to look for the ipod but MA gets mad as she needs an hand to squeeze. And YES, its true, pregnant women can squeeze a hand like Andre the Giant on steroids.

There is a point that I actually need to yack. There is just too much going on. My stomach was jacked already from something I had eaten and all that was going on was not helping. MA actually sees me dry gagging. I know I need to hold it together so I kinda just try to get in a place of zen.

MA's contractions progressively get more painful for the next hour. Before we know it, its 2 am and the doctor still isn't here. MA starts to freak out a little bit. The doctor that she trusts and is comfortable with is no where to be seen. We are informed that no one could get a hold of her and that the other doctor in the practice was paged. Of course that doesn't make this anxious, stressful moment in our lives any easier.

Then the pushing starts. I cannot believe that this is all happening so fast. Being there to see a woman push is also further evidence that women are 100 times stronger than men. And I have had a kidney stone and it was nothing like this. I will skip the details of this half hour just because TMI

I see the head is ready to come out and its a couple minutes past 2:20 am and the doctor is still not in the room. The doctor finally opens the door and walks in. The nurse tells her, that the baby is going to come at anytime and to hurry and put her gloves on. The doctor washes her hands, puts on the gloves, and the nurse actually tells MA to hold on and not push yet. When the doctor is finally ready, she gets in position, tells MA to push and all of a sudden at 2:25 am on 2/5/2010...WAAAAAA! WAAAAAA!

OH MY GOD! The baby is quickly handed to MA so she could be the first one to really hold her and I get shivers up and down my spine. There is hardly any blood on her and she doesn't look too blue like we had heard could happen. She doesn't even have that cone head because MA didn't push for hours. I cannot believe how beautiful our little girl is. I cannot believe she is actually OUR LITTLE GIRL.

I go to cut the umbilical cord and right when I start this blood squirts out. I compose myself, finish cutting the cord, as the nurse goes to clean the baby up and run some tests. I am trying to take pictures and video the baby's first moments on earth. I stop, just stare at her, and my eyes well up. This is so amazing. I just want to grab this baby and squeeze her as hard as I could (I still feel that way every day).

While I am watching and recording the baby's first moments out of the womb, I notice that MA isn't even done yet. She still has to push and do this afterbirth stuff which I am not paying any attention to as my eyes are glued on the cutie pie!

I could go on forever but I don't think I will ever get this post out. I started it weeks ago as it is but looking back on that day, my spine still tingles.

Later that day while Mary Anne was getting much needed sleep, I held the baby, who we finally decided to name Ava, in my arms and just looked at her in her eyes and my eyes began to water. Friends and family were soon coming over to visit. I could see Mary Anne sleeping right next to me and I could see my beautiful daughter struggle to keep her eyes open staring at me. A tear rolled down my cheek and as I wiped it away, I knew at that moment I had everything I could ever ask for.