Heartwarming stories and conversations

So on Sunday at church Mark was holding Joel talking to some strange woman, and when he returned to me he was like, “Haha. She just asked me if Joel was a boy or a girl.” And I was like, “Really?” And Mark was like, “Well, it isn’t surprising. Joel’s outfit is pretty asexual…”

And I was like, “Whaaaaa?!? You mean gender neutral, right?” And he insisted that he meant asexual, so we then had a discussion over brunch about the differences between gender and sexuality, because I had to educate him, and finally I just told him to google the effing word, and so he did, at which point he agreed that he indeed meant gender neutral and that I am much smarter than he is in a lot of ways.

Speaking of gender neutral, I try to be aware that we shouldn’t impose too many gender stereotypes on Joel, as it is completely fine if girls play with trucks and boys play with ponies, and everyone should learn about science and math and engineering, but at the same time, we don’t necessarily shy away from buying Joel things that are traditionally boy, especially because he is our first living child, and, best we can tell, he is a boy. But Mark took it all to another level and bought this book for Joel called ABC’s for Boys, and it cracks me up, because aren’t the ABC’s for girls too? And the book includes pictures of airplanes and trucks as if these things are only for boys, but it’s kind of endearing, as the first page of the book includes a note, “Hand drawn for my kids in heaven.”

Our new house cleaner seems to be amazeballs. (She used a toothpick and a toothbrush to clean our master bathroom for like two hours.) I was surprised to learn that many of her clients ask her to hide in a back bedroom when they have visitors so said visitors won’t know they employ a house cleaner and be so enamored at the notion that they can “do it all,” including keeping a perfect house. Here everyone is trying to maintain an aura of perfection, and meanwhile I’m shouting from the rooftops, “I GIVE UP ON SO MANY THINGS ESPECIALLY CLEANING!!!”

I recently read a novel called Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarity, and it was about (spoiler alert) a child who *almost* died and about how, consequently, the characters’ lives were in shambles, and I just couldn’t relate in the least, and it also made me kind of furious.

The other day a co-worker told me that another co-worker was going to put his dog to sleep. She told me that when he told her, she almost started crying. And upon hearing this, I almost started laughing – not at the dog, but at the notion that she would cry over this. Sometimes I think I might be a terrible person…

This morning I had a conversation that confirmed to me that I really should just hide in a closet for the rest of my life and never be social or venture into public ever again. I rode the elevator with someone who has four living children and has never lost one, and who also knows about Matthew. He asked, “How’s your little tyke?” And I was like, “Oh, he’s fine.” And he was like, “Now you just have to have three more, and you’ll be just like me!!!”

And there were three things I wanted to say to this…

1)      Two plus three isn’t four.

2)      You and I will never be alike, unless, of course, I have TWO more, and also one of your children dies.

3)      Fuck you dipshit.

But instead I kind of just grunted.

12 thoughts on “Heartwarming stories and conversations

  1. Loving this post. I wish you could have told that man all those things!! I had a very similar type conversation with a very ignorant male friend once. Needless to say I have avoided the guy like the plague. I can’t stand the stupid shit he says, not to mention they are expecting baby #3 and still live in blissful LaLa Land. People shouldn’t be so ignorant!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. A co-worker who was about to have her pet put down told me straight-faced, 100% serious, “Losing a pet is like losing a child.” NO IT IS NOT. It is sad, and terrible, and I’m sorry that she lost her beloved dog, but NO.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Awesome job showing restraint with the man in the elevator. Picturing you grunting makes me laugh knowing what you were really thinking. And I soooooo relate to what you shared about gender neutral!!! I was so open and insistent that we would not just arbitrarily buy Will cars, trucks and other “boy” toys just because he was a boy! It was so eye-opening for me that he actually gravitated towards those things naturally. I suddenly realized that there’s actually a reason that toy makers market toys to boys vs. girls and that it’s not arbitrary at all. The ONLY thing of Kristen’s he wanted to play with was the Barbie CAR because it had wheels. It will be interesting to see what Joel gravitates towards. You are a great mom to be so open! And definitely smarter than Mark. That made me laugh.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. OMG David’s aunt compared her dog dying to us losing Eliza. She prefaced it with “I know it’s not the same, but…” and I was like “if you know it’s not the same, why the fuck are you using it as a point of comparison to suggest you understand our grief?”

    I freaking love my dog and I will cry my eyes out when he dies. And then I will buy a new couch and miss him and be sad, but it will be NOTHING like when my daughter died.

    Also, it would have been amazing if you’d turned to the guy in the elevator and said, “Did your first baby die, too?” as though you truly didn’t know.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. OMG @ David’s aunt!!!

      I love Howie too and will cry, but I’m not sure I’d cry over my co-worker’s dog. Maybe I truly am a terrible person. Matthew’s death has just stolen my ability to cry over some things.

      And that would have been a perfect response in the elevator. WHY DIDN’T I THINK OF THAT?!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Ahhhh! The guy in the elevator! That’s so maddening. I actually met someone with a family like mine – two living boys, one stillborn boy. We were chatting in the locker room at the gym and we made the connection. I was then like we need to be best friends because no one else is going to get it.

    I can’t be trusted to function in public either. Today I took the LC to a swim lesson. I successfully navigated the lesson last week and was all score, there is only one other mom, she’s not chatty, and didn’t have any other kids with her. Today I roll in all cocky about my abilities to be normal and see a mom there with a double stroller with twin babies in it. And my freshly de-prozac-ed and re-HCG-ed brain short circuited. Oh hell no. There is no way in which I can chit chat with someone who was 2/2 on live births for 2016 while I was 0/1. Yadayadayada (I’m yada-ing over the worst part) I ended up waiting for the lesson to be over on a bench under the stairs in a remote part of the gym while bawling. My friend with the same family composition happened to be at the gym at the same time so she actually got my kids for me and dressed them and basically saved me from losing my mind.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you’ve met someone who understands, though I’m so sorry you’re each in the position of understanding each other.

      I’m so sorry you encountered this triggering situation at swim, and thank god your friend was able to save you. I really cannot effing handle people with twins either – the idea that someone could go through a pregnancy and end up with two living babies when I went through one of mine and ended up having to say goodbye is a thought almost too brutally unfair for me to begin to process.

      Huge hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

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