Chapter 4

137 Cheers

Just reiterating Rule #13 about celebrating your victories. It’s worth mentioning again.

Rule #32:  Let Them Have their Little Victories

138 Alt

Your Dad displays a natural talent for bowling. And he knows it.

He’s cute when he gloats. For the first few hours.

139 And He Knows It

After that it gets a little tough to swallow, but you’ve got to do it! He’s worth it.

Rule #33:  Jealousy is Not Always Rational

142 Lookin' Good

I have to feel for Uncle Akira, because I’m the same way myself. When he and Miko finally got married years later I may have been making that face myself. People have their stuff. Sometimes you just have to let it go.

143 Akira's Face

Even if it ruins some of the wedding photos.

Rule #34:  Caterers and Mixologists are Worthless

144 I Swear We Hired a Bartender

Just DIY, dear. Save yourself the money and the headaches. We hired both for our wedding and spared no expense. I ended up pouring the drinks, and your darling father baked our cake. The actual staff didn’t show up until the wedding was almost over. UGH!

146 Pretty Sure We Had a Caterer Too

I’m still a little mad about that, to be honest.

147 Might As Well

Even though I got my revenge on the venue itself.

Rule #35:  Make Sure You Eat at Your Own Wedding

148 You Did Okay

It’s a hard one to follow, but I’m telling you, you’ll need the energy. Plus, finding a quiet moment to share some cake with your new hubby (or wifey!) is pretty priceless.

149 Sweeties

It was a good day.

Rule #36:  Evil People Have Their Uses

154 Allow Me to Introduce Myself

You may not recognize him, but that’s your Uncle Max. This is the day we met. I beat him at chess (even though he cheated) and he asked me to join the Renegades.

155 Served

That group was unbelievably valuable to me. I learned so much, and my membership was instrumental in helping me accomplish my goals.

157 Acceptance

Plus, I got a super-cool outfit.

Which reminds me:  Rule #37: Club Outfits are Hit or Miss.

159 Teamwork

Try to get control as soon as you can or you may end up looking like Uncle Akira at a festival.

Rule #38:  A Round of Applause is Not the Correct Response to a Pregnancy Announcement.

162 Round of Applause

Just FYI. Maybe pass that one along to your future partner.

Rule #39:  Chopsticks Take Practice

165 Chopsticks

Related to good old Rule #9 (Feeding yourself is complicated) and also #15 (Some things take time), but it bears repeating. You’ll get it. Don’t worry.

Rule #40:  Men are Utterly Useless in the Delivery Room

168 Babytime

Completely, utterly useless.

169 Having a Lot of Feelings

I don’t know how women are, but I think it’s safe to say they’ll respond the same way. Point being, when the time comes for you to have a child (and make me a grandmother! Gasp!) you’re going to be on your own. But don’t worry. You’ll survive. Your body knows what it’s doing, and so does that wacky machine they put you in, regardless of the incompetence of the doctor operating it.

170 Is That What It Looks Like

You’ll be all right, and your baby will be worth it. This I know.

Rule #41 There’s No Shame in Getting Back to Business

171 Room for the Lab

Yes, babies are cute, but they sleep a lot and not wanting to stare at them for the ENTIRE time they’re doing that doesn’t make you a bad mother.

173 Max Approves

Nor does hitting the club when you’re thiiiiiiis close to completing your life’s aspiration.

175 Can't Touch This

I not only became Chief of Mischief that day, I also beat Marcus Flex in a dance-off. (Despite having no shoes on! See rule #37) And did I rub it in with a maniacal laugh? Yes, yes I did.

176 So Maniaical

And did I add further insult to injury by testing out my airhorn on him? Maybe.

177 Airhorn

So what if I did?

Sorry for the lack of baby pictures, sweet pea, but here’s the thing: you were cute, but looked exactly like every other baby ever. Seriously, have a baby and look at it. That’s what you looked like. I loved you (and still love you) to itty-bitty bits and pieces, but I preserve that warm, gooey feeling of love for your infant self in my heart, not on film.

Or maybe I was just really, really tired when you were a newborn and didn’t think to pick up a camera. You’ll understand when you have your own.

Lots of love,

Mom

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