Babies babies everywhere. Except here.
Oh for the love of marmalade. I wonder is there something in the water? Another two of my friends are sperminated, knocked up, with child, embiggened with baby.
I must admit I am feeling strangely nonplussed by it all. Pregnant eh? How nice for you.
I am glad for them, especially one of the girls who I know nearly all my life and is a really lovely mammy. Lovely mammies should have children, they're happy and their children are darlings. More people who are good and happy mammies should produce healthy happy babies. It seems a win -win situation. (People like my mother who resent having children and make sure their children know the 'sacrifices' they made to have them should rethink having babies)
So back to my friends. I think it's terrific that they are having their children, extending their families. I will of course be a doting 'aunt'. I'm very popular with other people's children, they like me. I collect CDs from newspapers for them, I include them in conversations, I enquire after their schools and pals. I pore over recently coloured pictures. I buy them nice christmas and birthday presents. I never give out to them or tell them to clean their rooms. See? I like my friends and I like their children.
So I realise I'm probably sounding churlish and a bit of a wally. But the selfish part of me now knows I can forget talking about anything other than baby stuff for the best part of this year.
Balls. I don't have that many female friends, losing them to a fetus is irksome- no matter how much I will like that fetus the moment it's able to make eye-contact.
What's worse is that my friends will start talking about babies around the clock-because that's what babies do, they take over. Suddenly there will be nothing but talk about morning sickness, veins and piles and stretch marks and food intolerance and back aches and whether or not soft cheese is a lethal as some people make out...
And then will come the, 'What about yourself? Any plans yet?'
Now my female friends are not foolish women, but every time they get pregnant they seem to forget that other women-particularly this women- are not exactly as naturally maternal as they are.
Ergo the 'plans' question irks the shit out of me.
Of course I have plans, I plan to finish the project I'm working on. I plan to master a handstand. I plan to meet Sam and Medbh. I plan to go running in the Scottish Highlands with Finn in March, I plan to run this year's Dublin City Marathon faster. I plan to expand my little business and get a bigger foot hold in the UK.
It's not just me either. The paramour has plans for this year, and they seem mostly to include some travel and a business expansion. Oh he and I regularly talk baby, but we talk it in a vague, abstract, off hand sometime in next three decades sort of way, and considering I'm 35 and he's 36 ( when did that happen?!) this seems amusingly procrastinatingly long- fingered of us.
Truth be told both of us are too something ( lazy, single minded, selfish>)to be dealing with small children. Oh we like the idea of running around Bushy park with the imaginary perfectly dressed children on a sunny summer morning, conveniently not thinking about the waking, feeding and dressing of those children. No, ours is a rosy tinted vision of our future children, where they pop up out of the ground as chubby robust three year olds, who sleep eight hours a night and never get colds or any other childhood illness (ideally they should be champion readers, hearty sportsmen and eschew television in favour of learning a musical instrument)
Then there is the noise.
I freely admit I am intolerant of long sustained piercing sound. Like phones, or hoovers or babies crying. And they seem to do that a lot. I find a lot of noise stressful in the extreme, not unlike Rainman.
My big fear- and I'm really not joking here when I say this- is that we would have a child and then it might teethe or cry a lot. I can picture the paramour coming home from work and asking, 'Say honey, where's the baby?' And I will look up from my own work and silently point over the top of my computer to the pram parked under the trees at the bottom of the garden.
Seriously. That's my fear, and it happens to be an important one. I don't want to be my mother. We went for lunch over christmas with friends of ours and they brought their 12 week old baby and it started to cry as soon as his poor mother's food arrived, and then we all took turns bouncing this volcano of sound while she wolfed her food down.
'He's some set of lungs on him.' The paramour said as we toddled off up the road.
'Indeed he has.'
And both of us did that nervous twitchy smile people who feel guilty do.
Where am I going with this? Well no where really, But I read an interesting piece in The Times this morning, I'll link to it here
I feel for that woman, I really do. I understand her so completely it is frightening. She's happy the way she is. She feels guilty about it. I think I'm pretty happy the way I am. Maybe I feel guilty for that. But why would I?
For that matter I'm pretty sure the paramour is happy the way he is. He's not backward about coming forward, if he wasn't happy he would say something. Wouldn't he? Would he? Wouldn't he?
So, nine months of baby talk. Oh well, it's just another three weeks until I go back on the rum.