“As her belly grew, people started asking about ‘her baby.’ But she was quick to tell them the story. This was not her baby; she was Grandma.” [Irvine/AP]
I, of course, have endless respect for all of y’all who do whatever it is you do (regular old sex, IVF, adopt, foster, gestational carrier, etc) to continue the human race. I have been thinking about you folks as I am attending baby showers every weekend this month, and am anticipating lots of fun conversations about my childlessness.
Technically, one — not I — might argue that I’m not childless.
I gave birth to a child in 2000, who lives with her adoptive family. But it’s not like I’m raising her, so I stick with “childless.”* That is, unless someone really pushes me, which tends to happen at events like…baby showers.
“If it happens, you’ll be so happy,” someone once said to me. “When that clock kicks in…” another said, raising her eyebrows significantly. A kicking, ticking clock? The horror.
But the novelty of watching someone squirm when I respond that I “gave my bundle of joy away” wore off a long time ago, so I think instead I am just going to tell people that my mom won’t have my baby. And for proof, I can show them the (pictured above left) text exchange I had with her earlier today.
Cindy Reutzel, the gestating grandma, is only 53, but I’ll tell you, the “at my age” thing my mom pulled felt like a little bit of a cop out. I’m 41, and my mom was a couple years out of college when I was born, so do the math — she’s got a couple years on Reutzel.
But my mom also goes on 20+ mile bike rides, hits the gym, eats right (here is where she will say something like “Eve Lyn, I ate three M&Ms yesterday!”), and has a still-living mother who passed 90 a good while ago. If I were in my mom’s shape I’d be leaking naked cell phone photos of myself “intended for my husband.”
But, if my mom won’t have my baby, she won’t have my baby. I can accept that. But will my baby shower pals?
*Oh! And I have also donated hella ova. So my genetic material is all over the place, hopefully failing to dating one another.