this is all a very funny joke

October 25, 2011

I had a conversation yesterday about choosing to become a parent, or rather, if you're on the precipice of the big decision will it be the worst or best one you'll ever make. The tone of our discussion was rather confusing, of the are we kidding or are we actually being terribly honest variety. At moments when I would normally find myself joking I almost found it too sacred a subject to poke with the funs. I guess I have one weak spot after all.

As a final counterpoint to the conversation this post was shared, On Parenthood, and reading it was one of those moments of pure agony, it's so perfectly executed. It was, yes! oh yes this! scratch the itch! culminating in GRMPH! WHY DIDN'T I WRITE SOMETHING THIS AWESOME. At its conclusion I flopped back onto my velveteen feinting couch and mewled for my maid to fetch me a cup of warm tea to bolster my fragile writerly constitution while I loosened my corset lacings.

I had elaborately curled hair at this point, because who wouldn't want elaborately curled hair if you didn't have to do the curling? Nobody that's who! And it would trace the curves of the couch's pillows like an artfully appealing border as I sighed and pressed my wrist to my powdered temple.

After I got my hysteria under control I sat on my couch pantsless and contemplating waking the Jude for a hug. I just wanted to be by him, the way I just have to drink coffee or punch B in the eye. I could feel it pulsing in my chest. Of course I wasn't so foolish, because toddlers don't actually pop up for a nice cuddle (ever) (EVER) but I thought of it, I did, and my heart ached. It continued to ache through the night, bringing me dreams of his little face pressed close to mine, and I awoke still in its grasp. Stupid love, all... here and stuff. Up in my face with its LOVE. Hmph. Gah.

Having been only recently swept out into deeper waters I'm still in awe of love's badass wolf moon tshirt powers. I had forgotten what it's like to be blasted, completely bowled over by love. I had forgotten how it shakes you when it rushes through and leaves everything askew. When I married I thought, "Well hell, I'll never get to fall in love again. This is it." but here I am again with the butterflies in my stomach pining for a dude, just to be with him. I'm sure life thinks it's very funny right about now.

Of course none of that has anything to do with the vastly personal and complex decision to become a parent. I can say that I chose this fate, that I braved the waters willingly, but that hardly justifies why anyone else would want to. I can say that I'm madly blindly wildly happy waist-deep in this river, but that doesn't mean anyone else would be. There are less than zero guarantees about that kind of thing, there's no promise of butterfly love. Don't come back here and blame me if you end up with some asshole kid who throws mulch in your eye and renders you blind in a freak accident.

You can stand on the edge of the precipice as long as you like, trying to decide one way or the other. Will we or won't we. Should we or shouldn't we. People spend years gazing into its depths try to see what the future might be like down there in the fog but unless you're a wizard you can't see the future. I am a wizard so I was happily able to predict that everything would be super great and thusly spared myself the terrifying moment of what the hell have we done. Or, I think that all the time like most parents do. Am I a wizard? You tell me.

In the end all we can do is stand on the edge, close our eyes, hope for the best, and jump. Or, you know, not jump. That's your call. I think it's really nice down here in my howly wolf moon shirt but that's just me, Jamie. Lovestruck mother. Badass wizard.

Your path may be different. Good luck.
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