Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Allison, of An Unsealed Room, vouches for my “maternal talents.”

Yes, I had the privilege of visiting with her for a little bit. Allison is a very intelligent and classy lady and it was nice to get to know her better in person. Amazing, the variety of people who have come into my life through this blogging adventure.

Potential suitors, take note: Allison’s baby was crying until I picked her up, at which point she relaxed immediately and smiled contentedly while I kissed her and blew gently into her adorable little face. Tamar is so cute!

Allison’s older children are cute too, despite what she wrote in her post. Of course, they are normal children, and they had cabin fever – so I don’t think I saw them at their best. But Allison’s post reminds me of a phenomenon I’ve been experiencing lately in my life. A nice Michlalah girl like me is not supposed to say this out loud, but here goes:

It used to be that when I visited my friends for Shabbat, I’d come home feeling sad and envious. I’d think “Sigh. She’s so lucky. Her husband is so good to her. She has people in her house to love. And the baby is so precious. When will I have a life like that?”

But now, many of my friends have multiple children. The kids are often too young to take care of themselves, but old enough to whine, manipulate, and bicker. My girlfriends cannot have an adult conversation without a toddler attempting to put his hand down her chest or pull off her hat, or two older kids interrupting with “Tell her to stop touching me!” My close friends, God bless them, say things like “Stop that right now” and “Get out of there this instant” or “if you don’t quit it by the time I count to three you’ll have a time-out.” They are constantly surrounded by noise. Their floors are sticky, their furniture is full of crumbling cheerios and molding raisins, and their clothes all have spit-up on them.

So now I come from those weekends to my clean, blissfully quiet home and think “Thank God.”

No, a nice frum girl is not supposed to think this way. And so I say: let he who enjoys screeching and whining cast the first stone.

Sarah Smile tells me that “it’s different when it’s your own kids.” Most of me hopes that I’ll have a chance to confirm that myself someday. Most of the time I would rather be a tugged-at Eema than noise-free and child-free. But a lot of me is grateful that I can, for example, blog away whenever I want, without another person whining or crying or pulling at me. No one is going to wake me up at 6 am. Or 3 am. I can hear myself think. I can go out whenever I want, wherever I want. I’m living the life that many of my married-with-children friends have confided that they often wish they could have, and that they sometimes regret giving up.

Note to God: I appreciate everything you have given me, and I appreciate what you have not given me. And whenever you choose to give me more people to love who happen to live in my house and perhaps even share my genes, I’ll welcome and appreciate that, too. But don’t think I won’t remember this post when they spit up on my Shabbos clothes.

Note to potential suitors: What, would you rather have a woman who knows how noisy and messy kids can be and is willing to have them and raise them anyhow, or a naive Pollyanna who says "oooo, I want to be just like my Rebbetzin and have eight of them!" and then turns out to not be able to handle it and is a shrew with your progeny? You decide.

***UPDATE 2***
Guess I'm still not in the best of spirits right now. :-(
Bah, humbug.

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