I was 31 when I got married. As in years. I know! Decrepit! We had to get special permission from the state legislator to even get married because at such an advanced age – unless one has already had one or more prior matrimonial unions in their repertoire or have spent serious time contemplating a life in a convent before deciding those black garbs do nothing for their figure – you are legally deemed as “having something seriously wrong with you”. But it happened. That’s right folks…Emily Steele defied the laws of nature. Despite having several offers for an AARP card, I managed to take that trip down the aisle. And I didn’t even need a walker!
Naturally, being so chronologically advanced, the questions started shortly after the close of cocktail hour. I hadn’t even tossed my bouquet when the first family member with an undeserved sense of confidential entitlement asked….”So when are you going to have a baby?” Seriously??? When are we going to have a baby?! We’ll be heading up to the honeymoon suite in a few hours! I’ll let you know how it goes!
And it hasn’t stopped since. Family dinners: “when are you going to have a baby?” Lunch room at work: “when are you going to have a baby?” Picking up a six-pack of Coronas at my local Kroger: “when are you going to have a baby?”
Good lord! I know my eggs are starting to get liver spots but why the heck is everyone so concerned with when I am going to squeeze a 9-pound watermelon out a hole the size of a Snapple lid? I had no idea how many lives were in limbo because my stick hasn’t yet turned blue. Sure, I’m only 2 years away from being considered an “at-risk” pregnancy. I just didn’t realize what a risk that apparently was for everyone else!
OK. So I’m a little behind my peers in my quest for lifelong achievement in child-rearing. Why does everyone feel the need to point it out? I mean, it’s not as if I think I might have given birth to three kids already but can’t quite remember which closet they are stashed in until the holidays. I am well-aware of the absence of runny noses and poopy diapers in our house!
Why do people assume my pre-conceived timeline follows everyone else’s anyway? You don’t see me asking folks why they haven’t written anything funny yet! (Well, except for the other guys in Common Sense for Dummys. I mean, really….they should get on that fairly soon!) I can’t recall a single time I approached an over-20-something and inquired, “when are you going to get a TV show on the air?” Because let’s face it, it would be pretty brass of me to assume that all other quarter-centurions are on the same life path I am. Besides, I already find most people far less funny than me and why force myself to suffer through even more amateurs’ lame attempts at humor?
Just what is so great about having babies anyway? You can’t stop it, you know. They all grow into teenagers at some point! And who the heck wants one of those hanging around the house with their sass-talk, smarter-than-thou attitudes, and irritating misconceptions that they already know everything? Please! Ender already has to live with me!
And let’s not forget all the other fun-filled stages of parenthood. The crying to say “I’m hungry”. The crabbiness when it’s past naptime. The “mine, mine, MINE” phase. The whole “look at me, look at me, look at me right NOW!” thing. When would I have time to raise a child while I’m doing all that?
Still, they are pretty cute when they fall asleep in your arms. It is really awesome seeing that smile on their face when you walk in the room. You can’t help but cheer them on at soccer games or give a standing ovation at their dance recitals. And nothing beats the sound of those three little words being uttered from their mouths…”I gotta tinkle.” Ok. Maybe, just maybe, I’ll consider having one of my own. After all, an offspring of mine is destined to be both brilliant and adorable and I can’t argue with that!