With many of our friends giving birth in the last year or so (or about to do so), TCB and I have been feeling a little… Well, with my body yelling at me, “BABIES!!!” and him not getting any younger, we’ve been a little.. not jealous, not envious, but some other word that means we’re looking forward to getting to do that, but know it also kind of sucks. But with that, we’ve been really hesitant to say much of anything about it, even to each other (except he said he could hear the screaming of “BABIES!!!” from my body. Weird.) I’m not sure if it’s because things feel pretty settled around here, if it’s something to do with starting-to-decline fertility, or “all my friends are doing it,” but I wish that part of sex ed. included a warning of
“Even if you think you don’t want them, in your late 20’s, your body might send you into crazy-baby mode and that’s all you’ll be able to think about. You’ll have an illogical, almost uncontrollable need to reproduce. What disgusted you before about giving birth may seem awesome and amazing. What horrified you about kids may seem absolutely fine. You’ll want to hold every baby you’re introduced to and might have momentary thoughts of stealing one from your friends, kinda. Or at least borrowing one for the weekend. You’ll look forward to baby showers because then you have reason to wander the baby aisles, reason to sew some baby clothes/bibs, and reason to indulge thoughts about what you’d want for your own. You might keep some of that for yourself, just because it was on clearance or it came out really well and besides, you made extra anyway because you didn’t know who was having what when you started sewing. Warning you now: Crazy mode may be in your future. Just make sure you plan for it and keep a level head about it.”
I have to say, I never expected to be hit with the “BABIES!!!” feeling. I saw other women go through this baby-crazy and could only think, “nu-uh, not for me. Do not want. My friends are nuts.” Baby shows made me want to vomit. Could not care less about nanny and parenting shows. And now, I love holding our neighbor’s, my cousin’s, our friend’s babies and kinds, love playing with them, baby and parenting shows are cool, and we’re talking about what kinds of behaviors we’d like to exhibit ourselves to provide good examples for the kids. And if we agree about a parenting decision/tactic. (Still not sure about the diy aspect of baby-incubating. We’ll figure out those possibilities later.)
Anyway, we finally talked about timing of having the babies because really, we’re in no position to give in now, and figured out that late 2012 is the first year we might start seriously thinking about it. This year, we should really focus on the house, working on collecting dissertation data, and getting TCB a longer-term job. Next year should be all about graduation, moving and settling in wherever we land. The year after, we should be set to finish up some of our pre-baby personal goals (like debt tackling and traveling) and start thinking about family expansion by adding a person. (We’ll probably add another dog after we move. Angus is really excited about that.) No firm decision on the number; we’ll reevaluate after the first addition, and we may shift the timing based on when the school offers tenure, so that, if we diy it, kid #1 (or #2) isn’t totally dependent on me if it looks like we’re going to be packing up and moving.
So, there’s our plan, if I didn’t jinx us by writing about it, and it feels weird to put a date on reproduction that’s not just “sometime in the future.” For the record, the only people who have really asked are new moms/dads themselves and looking to see if we’re going to provide a playmate soon, recently divorced and not sure what else to talk about, or about 3 years old: “Why do you always visit us? Where are your kids? We can visit you so I can play with them.”