Blogs Are Stupid

Doesn't anyone believe in Dear Diary anymore? What happened to the joy of putting actual pen to paper? And why does every ordinary Jane and John think they can write well enough to burden the world with their scribblings? It’s a mystery that badly needs solving. My first entry contains my thoughts about blogging and will set your expectations. The rest will probably be stream of consciousness garbage, much like you’ll find on any other blog. Perhaps we will both come away enlightened.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Danger Will Robinson

We always meant to have a large family.

One evening shortly after we met, Husband invited me to his apartment for dinner and I happily accepted. By that time, I already had a pretty good idea that he was maybe, possibly, potentially the one. After dinner, (homemade lasagne, quelle impressive, no?) we sipped wine and did that little dance that couples do when they are poised at the edge of deep affection laced with blinding lust. They want to leap into the precipice, but each is afraid the other might not follow. They fear falling on their face, broken and bleeding, alone and foolish.

The truth was, we were panting for one another, but neither wanted to let on. I fully intended to sleep with him that night, (shut up, I was a consenting adult who had been on my own for five years) but I wanted to be sure he understood that I'm not the type for whom casual sex holds any appeal, and that if he debauched me and then tried to blow me off, I would stalk his ass like Alex Forrest and that I would make her little Lapin A La Cocette look like alphabet soup.

No, not really. But I did want him to know that I wasn't looking for a quick lay. I was looking for a serious relationship. I was ready to get married, and it's surprising how effectively one can weed out the man whores and the playboys just by stating that fact preemptorily. Nothing sends a commitment phobe packing more swiftly than a proclomation of that nature.

So I said, directly, "I'd like to get married and have babies."

He waggled his eyebrows at me lasciviously and said "Me too." which made it very clear that it wasn't the having of babies that appealed to him, but rather, the getting of them.

That made me laugh, and then we didn't get much more talking done that night.

Luckily, however, it turned out that he really did want to get married and have a family. And he agreed that 4 or 5 children would be simply fabulous.

Oh, what sweetly naieve fools were we.

Pre-Pubescent One was a very easy baby. Diminutive One was not. His infancy and toddlerhood left me emotionally, physically and psychologically exhausted. Even though I did want another baby, I knew I couldn't handle him and care for an infant. I wanted to wait until I felt sure that the new baby would get as much time and attention as his/her predecessors.

That day was very slow in coming.

When Diminutive One went to kindergarten, I decided it was probably a good time. Except...that for the first time in 9 years, I had some time to myself. Suddenly, I could breathe.

I could shower without worrying about catastrophe striking at the hands of my willful youngest son, who had stopped napping at 18 months (which prompted a very protracted period of mourning on my part). I could grocery shop in half the time, with no melt-downs over trinkets or treats. I could clean without "help".

I was reluctant to give it up, so I gave myself the gift of a year. I was only 35, I had a little time.

Somehow that year stretched into two, and then three and then suddenly, my boys were 7 and 10. 8 and 11. 9 and 12.

And then I realized that the urge was gone. I liked our lives. I liked the freedom, I liked the spontenaiety. I liked sleeping. The logistics of almost every outing and endeavor became immeasurably easier.

Also, by this time, the fiscal realities of raising children were resting heavily on the shoulders of my Husband; the lone wage earner in our household. He expressed, timidly, that he was quite happy to stop at two. And I, reluctantly but pragmatically, agreed.

Husband suggested a vasectomy, but I wasn't quite ready to embrace that kind of permanence. I begged him to give it some time, to let me come around to the idea. To say my good-byes unhurriedly, with fondness instead of resentment.

So in my heart, I bade a sad but resigned farewell to the girl child I would never bear and made my peace with that.

And then I gave my blessing for the old clip and snip.

But somehow, it never happened.

I've always had very sporadic and infrequent periods and we had to try quite concertedly to get pregnant with both boys. So his procrastination didn't concern me overmuch. But then, suddenly, a year or so ago, my periods became exceedingly and surprisingly regular. Whereas before, I could go months and months and months without menstruating, I now have a ridiculously reliable 28 day cycle.

This means, of course, that I am ovulating regulary. So, we have become masters at tactical avoidance. But you know...our luck can only hold out for so long.

And proof of this came last fall in the form of a beautiful baby boy, born to Pre-Pubescent One's Coach and his wife, both of whom are over 40 and have children similar in age to our boys.

What a lovely surprise, but a surprise nonetheless. Coach underwent the "procedure" when his wife was 8 months pregnant. Better late than never, I suppose.

The baby is five months old now. I hold him and play with him at every ballgame. And LORD it feels good to cuddle a little one again. Better than it should. The first time I held him after he was born, I felt my breasts tingle in response to his boneless warmth, his milky smell, his sweet cry. That primal instinct never goes away; to feed, nurture, protect.

Last night, as I held the baby, Diminutive One came over to inspect him. He was shy with the baby but the baby was not shy with him. He reached for Diminutive One's nose and swatted at him with a volley of chubby fisted punches. I took his little hand in mine, bopped Diminutive on the nose three times and said "boom boom boom!"

The baby laughed uproariously.

Is there anything sweeter than that sound? Pure mirth, unabashed joy, achingly innocent glee. A baby's laughter is a balm for any hurt or ill.

We played this game for several minutes, and an awareness began to overtake me as we did so. An awareness of yearning I had thought long dead, since it had not resurrected even when my sister gave birth to a set of beatiful twins four years ago. I was amazed, elated and enamored. But not the slightest bit envious.

So the longing startled me with it's intensity. It was a white hot streak of sheer unadulterated need; the need to create life again. Perhaps it was simply a biological response to the baby, but it disconcerted me.

It disconcerted Husband too.

About that time he happened by on his way to first base to take up his position there. He must have seen something in my face, because he came to the fence, pointed a finger sterntly at the baby's mother sitting next to me and said with mock enmity "You need to quit pawning that baby off on my wife. What the hell're you trying to do to me???"

She laughed, because the two of them have been having the same conversation since the baby was born.

Husband walked away muttering "Danger. Danger, Will Robinson."

Will Robinson take heed. Danger indeed.

Something tells me that Husband will be looking for a good urologist very soon.

And in the meantime? I reserve the right to say "I told you so" should nature bestow upon us a little gift to enjoy in our twilight years.

I like saying "I told you so."


  • At 5:48 AM, Blogger Polgara said…

    Would be so nice to read about you with a daughter if the way you write about your sons is anything to go by...not that i'm wishing anyhing onto you!
    Pol x

  • At 7:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Some things have a funny way of working themselves out. My wife's cousin went through a rough time in her marriage and even a separation that lasted over a year.

    Shortly after they got back together, she made a snide comment about being out of the baby business.

    Oh, fate is such a fickle thing and her daughter was born 6 weeks after our son, meaning she conceived about a week after her smartass comment.

    Paybacks are hell.

  • At 8:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    We always said that we wanted six children. Then, after it took three years to conceive our first, and six years to conceive our second, we kind of gave up on that idea. I was just happy to have two!
    After my last daughter, though, something happened, and every time my husband and I looked at each other funny I became pregnant. Five pregnancies (counting my youngest daughter) in five years, with two of them being miscarriages. One of those was a baby that we lost at 17 weeks and had to deliver in the hospital...a beautiful tiny baby boy. In the end we ended up with two girls and two boys, and a definite feeling that we were DONE. I had my tubes tied.
    Now my youngest is almost four, and I am enjoying the freedom of not having a baby anymore...and very thankful that I don't have that baby longing that I was afraid would come. I assumed that this contentment would last forever.
    In other words, you have just freaked me out.

  • At 8:39 AM, Blogger Life As I Know It said…

    Oh, I love this post. And can relate.
    Wishing for a 'surprise' for you.

  • At 8:39 AM, Blogger Fairly Odd Mother said…

    I read this in suspense, waiting to see if the last line held a little bit of news. I have two friends with 'oops' babies. It sounds like you would be delighted with an oops. In that case, don't let hubby get the procedure until you are sure.

    My husband had it done when #3 was 3 months old. I was sure, sure, sure. Three and a half years later, I'm still sure. But, I do dream of grandchildren! LOL

  • At 9:41 AM, Blogger Middle Girl said…

    The first paragrah...LOVE it.

    Happy with my two I never wanted more than that. I was beyond pleased that fate or whatever saw fit to grace me with a boy, then a girl.

    A friend of mine with three in their twenties also has two more who are not yet 10. A girl of 8 and a son of 6.


  • At 9:44 AM, Blogger sltbee69 said…

    I love this post. It's exactly why at 38 and with an almost 11-yr old, I still haven't given up that I might get a miracle baby before 40. I'm secretly hoping you get a surprise package in a form of a little one.

  • At 10:33 AM, Blogger Sensitiva McFeelingsly said…

    I love this post!

    I have been totally obsessing over having a baby recently. Sometimes I think I'm not ready and I'm still too selfish to do it. And then other times I think about holding my own baby and how wonderful it will be and I can't WAIT to have one.

    I've got time, but I want one soon, damnit. :) I hope that if the fates agree you can have another. I'd love to read all about it!

  • At 11:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    It's that SMELL! That addictive, fresh head, sweet sweaty aroma that zooms directly from nose to ovaries. Wow.

    What a great post - you appear to be right where I was a few years ago. I made it over the 40 hill, and now patiently wait (no pressure here sons - I know you're only 15 & 18) for grandbabies. In the meantime, I'm looking into being a babyholder at the hospital.

  • At 11:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I have 2 daughters aged almost 11 and 9 - 11 yr old much like PPO and my 9 year old is my spirited one and like DO, as an infant, todder and now a tweenager, she pushes my to my limits emotionally and physically almost on a daily basis. Another baby was never even thought of because I didn't not think emotionally I could handle it. We talked about the big V for many years and never did it. I also never used any birth control - I know tempting fate but it all worked out.

    Fast forward to 6/7/07 when we as a family welcomed another baby girl to our family. It has been hectic and stressful and wonderful beyond imagination. Spirited child can make the baby laugh like no one else can. She shared her middle name with the baby so the baby could have a family name. There seems to be a bond between the 2 that I could never have imagined.

    I will glad let you smell her sweet little bur head if I ever get close enough to Atlanta!

    PS. Hubby got snipped on Valentines Day - I was so relieved because I much as I love this baby I don't want any more!

  • At 11:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I could've WRITTEN this post!!! Assuming, of course, that I had ANY writing talent whatsoever! I don't, but our paths are eerily similar!! I've been reading your blog for quite some time and I look forward to it each day.

    I, too, was a stay-at-home mother of two boys and had grown quite accustomed to my returning freedom. Plus, I felt very HAPPY with my family and wasn't really sure I'd need the third child that we'd already agreed upon (before marriage) to feel a completed family. My husband was asking/begging/trying for the third whenever possible, but I just didn't feel the strong NEED for another one. I did, however, have the nagging sense that if I didn't go for number 3 that I'd be plagued with regret or at least "what ifs" for the rest of my life.

    So, at age 34, when my boys were 6 and 4, I decided that if it was going to be so, it would have to be sooner than later (which really meant now or NEVER). I got pregnant and delivered my beautiful baby girl 2 months after my 35th birthday. I never thought I was missing anything by not having a daughter, but she really awakened a part of me that I didn't know existed. With 7 and 5 years between her and her brothers it's been an incredibly fun, hectic new life we've created for ourselves that I'd never go back and change. I would not agree to have my tubes tied at the time of delivery (c-section) but I can honestly say now that it's nice to really FEEL the sense of KNOWING I'm DONE (and husband has been snipped)! Now that I have that feeling, I realize just how much I was unsure before having her.

    Incidentally, our decision to go for another one after a substantial gap inspired friends of ours who followed suit with a little girl of their own when their boys were 9 and 11. She, too, shares my feeling of gratitude for having taken the plunge!

    My point in posting this is to let you know that maybe you won't get a girl (I believed that I wanted and was having another boy until she came out!) if you go for a third, but you just might finally get the peace and certainty of knowing that you've filled whatever space in your heart wasn't quite spoken for. I always felt that I'd never regret having another one, but I might not regret having another one FOREVER.
    Turns out, my decision was the right one for me.

    Whatever you decide (or whatever happens!) my best to you!

  • At 12:44 PM, Blogger Sarahviz said…

    Sometimes you don't realize that you're missing that #3 surprise in your life until you finally have it.
    This I know.

  • At 1:05 PM, Blogger Amy Y said…

    Oh how that clock has a strong ticker...

    I thought this post was going to end up with a picture of a positive pee test!

    Just think... in 10~15 years you'll have grandbabies ~ which I hear is the best of both worlds. You get to love them just like you did your kids, but when you are ready for simple pleasures like "me time" and sleep ~ you get to give them back. :)

  • At 1:12 PM, Blogger Alison said…

    What a sweet post! It does make me wonder if I will ever regret my husband getting snipped. Right now we are perfectly happy with our two. We wanted to wait a year after the youngest was born to see how we felt, and after the horrific bout of PPD I decided that I didn't want to go through the baby stage again. But they sure are sweet!

  • At 2:03 PM, Blogger Avalon said…

    I used to periodically get those pangs when I was in my 30's. thinking about what if.

    Now I'm in my early 40's and soooooo glad I don't have any young kids!

  • At 4:29 PM, Blogger Loralee Choate said…

    For many reasons this is a very emotional post for me this week.
    (Monday just wasn't a good day)

    I relate in so many, many ways.

  • At 4:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I know this longing....too well.

  • At 4:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I know this longing....too well.

  • At 7:28 PM, Blogger Shelley said…

    I am one of those with an "oops" third baby. She came along when our oldest was 10 1/2, and younger one was almost 8. I was 35 at the time, and I know I might catch flak for this because babies are a blessing, yada yada, but I was NOT happy. It certainly took some getting used to, and her toddlerhood/preschool-hood wore on me, unlike the other two. Maybe it's just because I'm old now. In any case, she's starting kindergarten in the fall, and she'a a lot of fun to have around, along with her 16 and 13 year-old sisters. Little kids learn some interesting stuff when they live with two teenagers! ;) She sure does provide comic relief sometimes. I think we'll keep her.

  • At 7:50 PM, Blogger Rositta said…

    Maybe you will get that girl, I'll stay tuned. My son presented me with three lovely grandsons who are respectively 22,20 and 17. He said he was done but last April a baby girl was born to him and his new spouse. What a gorgeous surprise that was and we all love her to bits...I think he's looking for a urologist now for sure...ciao

  • At 8:50 PM, Blogger Terri said…

    As I read this I half way expected you to reveal that you were indeed pregnant.

    We have two girls, nine and six, and I still long for another even though I'll be 38 next month.

  • At 9:50 PM, Blogger Angela said…

    Oh babies...

  • At 9:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Yes, this is exactly why I insisted on trying for a third right away, and not waiting for a few years like my husband wanted. I wanted to have a third while we were already in diaper mode. Unfortunately (luckily?) the third was twins. But now our four kids are finally hitting that big kid slightly leass demanding phase.
    I still love babies though.

  • At 9:53 PM, Blogger anne said…

    Oh, I was expecting (no pun intended) big news too.

    I have to say, I am happy with my two - I love my kids! - but THANK GOD I'm done. Every once in a while my hubby says "Maybe we should adopt." To which I reply, "Let's try another dog and see how that goes." Maybe I'm a freak of nature but I have never held a baby and felt the urge to have another one. Although, I was not a happy pregnant camper so maybe that has something to do with it.

    Secretly though, I would consider adopting if we didn't have such a wacky life.

  • At 10:26 PM, Blogger merinz said…

    Hmm well I wish for a little surprise for you - both!

    My Mother had a little surprise, shock horror - she was just turning 40. I remember her in tears after visiting the doctor and hearing the news.

    But what a blessing my little brother was in our family. Later when my other brother and both parents had passed away my little brother and I were the only ones left.

    And, it is very very good for teenagers to experience a baby in the house. Teenagers can be a little egocentric and this is quickly remedied!

  • At 10:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Oh-o, trouble indeed.

  • At 12:36 AM, Blogger Girlplustwo said…

    i read this whole thing trying not to skip ahead yet hoping for the "we are pregnant" ending and you know, BA, I felt sad when it wasn't there.

    so it feels right to me too (and if that's not a voice of authority, i dare you to tell me who is....) (dude)

  • At 12:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    We had our family of two boys, very similar to yours in many ways, and we were happy with just two. I had the ol' snip-snip and enjoyed the results very much. And when our boys were the same age as yours we felt the same about our "freedom" as well. But when they got a bit older, we felt we weren't done. So for us, adopting two more boys was the answer. So we have two sets. no girl... yet.
    But my point is, don't rule out a big family yet, you have lot's of time!

  • At 8:18 AM, Blogger Jenny, the Bloggess said…

    I'm exactly the same way. Except replace "baby" with "blythe doll".

    Actually I guess I'm not the same way at all.

    Nonetheless, here's to wishing you get up the duff. (I'm pretty sure that means "pregnant" but if it doesn't I totally apologize.)

  • At 12:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    There really is nothing more purely joyous than a baby's laugh - girl or boy.

  • At 2:45 PM, Blogger Unknown said…

    I had a story that started out very much like yours...I even used my neighbors' babies for my Baby Fix and as a method of birth control...and then, when that desire hit me, like it hit you...I got drunk, threw caution to the wind and lo and behold I'm starting over again with diapers and bottles at the end of this summer...

    Sometimes I freak out but then I make sure I've had my anti-depressant and remember that everything's going to be OK.

    I'm going to check back here to see how this story really ends b/c I get the feeling this isn't an end but a beginning.

    Nice to meet you BTW.

  • At 1:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Sounds like both boys are ready to be big brother as well (should such a thing come about, of course!) - although, that said, you didn't really say if DO liked the game as well - what was his reaction?

    have fun! I've always said DS was the best surprise I ever had (at age nearly 42 at his birth) :-)


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