20 mos post-first born, in fact, just as all my friends said it would. The first time I heard it, I was completely caught off guard. In my kitchen (my home, my comfort zone), I was approached from the rear by a friend of the family.
The sound of that lone syllable echoing in my head was enough to keep me turned around at the sink; chin tucked into my neck just enough to show I was listening, but intent on getting the dishes clean.
I knew what was coming; we just had an enjoyable dinner complete with all the “oohs” and “ahhhs” that accompany a family gathering where a toddler is the highlight of the evening.
“When are you guys having the next one?”
There are so many things wrong with this statement, beginning with the presumptive “when?”.
How about the word; “next”? I mean, just how many are we talking about here? Four? Five? Furthermore, when does this “when?” end?
My answer; one that’s been rehearsed over and over since even before my first (and ONLY) child was a concept:
“Oh no, just one for us. One is more than enough.” Big fake smile.
<Small, very real rage>.
Why so angry? I thought you’d never ask! Please, let me list these reasons in bullet points for you– in fact, why don’t I choose asterisks instead? Asterisks are ornamental… friendly and less likely to be used by someone on a war path to prove a point, right?
* My husband and I are not breeders. True, we’ve got some killer genes to pass on, but unless you’d like to talk about a surrogate offer, we will stand behind our word, thank you very much.
* We enjoy our nightly couch time.
* I like having time to blow dry my hair. It’s a priority. Sue me.
* Believe it or not, we actually WANT to spoil our child.
* We’re not a baby factory for our parents. We get it; our folks want grand kids. But guess what? They have other children they can harass.
* We do not care to make our friends who have multiples feel better about their situation by having several of our own. We love you, but it’s your problem you have no time to: shower for more than 3 minutes, eat dinner in peace without being the target of an Ella’s Kitchen Squash Broccoli puree boomerang, and catch-up on Mad Men. I cry for you, really… I do.
If you approach me with this question, be prepared for my canned response. But please know, I will be more than happy to show you to the door if you press me for more information. And if you ask me in public, there’s a good chance I might throw a scalding hot cup of coffee directly at your face and run screaming “I need an adult!!”