I have never understood the phrase “drawing a line in the sand.” How drawing a line that will surely be washed away in the next 24 hours can be an indicator of an unwavering stance is a mystery to me.
But I still do it. I draw lines in the sand. Sometimes the lines are washed away by the ocean and I meticulously draw them again. And still other times I am grateful to the great and powerful ocean for letting me change my mind.
I have not drawn an irreversible line in the sand with regards to making more babies. There has been no snipping or frying or tying of anything, not mine or MQD’s. This is not to say that I have not quietly wept and pressed my lips against Lucy’s head, inhaling her sweet scent and choking back the ugly tears because I know that she is my last baby.
Shortly after she was born MQD and I would joke about more babies. I joked. He smiled. My newly post-partum hormones gave way to hysteria one day and I begged him to say it out loud that we were enough, the four of us. He had the good sense to keep smiling and say “Of course.”
We are a family of four. I am more than satisfied. Sometimes I see a mother and a little boy in overalls and I will tell his parents “Most of the time I am at peace with having two little girls, but damn if a little dude in overalls doesn’t make me start to wonder.” Sometimes a woman will laugh and say “You want him?” Sometimes she will say “You could have one more? C’mon, you could try?”
I used to explain. I’d explain about how happy I am with the spacing between our two children and that if I was to wait four or five more years before I had another I would be 43. I am tired now at 38. Sometimes I would tell her about how I am certain that my husband is blessed/cursed to spend his life in a house full of women and that I know we’d have three girls if we had another. Or I’d laugh about how 2 kids means we can keep our house and our cars. I would mention that my husband and I have always had children and while I adore them with every fiber of my being I do look forward to a day when he and I can be alone.
There are so many reasons. Some humorous. Some sincere. All of them valid. I am done.
This afternoon I cleaned out Lucy’s closet. I do it frequently. I am a sentimental soul but I save memories and moments in time with photographs and words. I am a recovering packrat and I am cautious not to fall down the rabbit hole of “saving just this one thing.”
So when I put these overalls on the “Donate” pile and my eyes welled up I didn’t know what to make of it. She didn’t even wear them all that often. It can’t simply be that she is growing up so fast. There was a pile of clothes she had outgrown that didn’t make my nose start to tingle and my eyes leak.
Why the overalls? Right there on the front they say “OshKosh Girl.” These overalls aren’t for the boy that I think I am destined to bring in to the world. And surely the pile of pink I was donating could be useful if my suspicions proved themselves to be accurate and we had another little girl one day.
I put the overalls back in the closet. And I sat down on the floor and I had a good cry. “Mama? Mama sad?” Lucy asked. I started to laugh.
“Baby girl, I have no idea what I am. Except pregnant. I know I am not pregnant. Mama isn’t sad, Lucy. Mama just might be a little bit crazy.”
It’s a good thing proximity to small pairs of overalls has nothing to do with getting pregnant. Because if teeny OshKosh could knock you up I am afraid we’d be expecting a baby next summer.