Despite having elective surgery last week, G has graciously decided to help a (half)mama out and is guest blogging today. Love. This. Man.
I am a total sap. Once, at the end of a horrible Jennifer Aniston movie, Halfmama turned to tell me what a horrible movie that was and found tears running down my blubbering face. I have internal debates over whether Four Weddings and a Funeral was better than Notting Hill (no, it's not). And when I'm out for a walk and see a new mother or father of newborn twins, I forget the sleepless nights trying to get two screaming blobs to burp for hours on end and just think to myself dreamily, "Awww, they must smell soooo good."
I am a realist too, however. For instance, I know that Notting Hill was better because Julia Roberts was more vulnerable than Andie MacDowell. And I know that that those new parents will make more trips to Costco than they could possibly imagine, for diapers and wipes and formula. And then will make a trip back after getting all the way home because they didn't get enough, or they got the wrong size, or the wrong formula. And I know that they will soon begin an internal clock, set to 18 years, when they will be sending two young adults off into the world for a projected $50,000/year. Each. In today's dollars. In 18-years-from-now-dollars, that's something like $2 million/year. Each.
Which is why I sit here writing this with an ice pack on the family jewels.
Halfmama and I are throwing in the towel. We have decided that we are done procreating. We have said that to everyone quasi-jokingly from the moment we had one boy and one girl in one shot, but now, we really mean it. Last week, I had The Vasectomy.
Since the moment we first started trying to have a family, Halfmama was put through the ringer. We had two very painful (emotionally for both of us and physically for her) miscarriages. With no obvious reason for those losses, she endured unpleasant testing, poking, prodding, ultrasound after ultrasound, nice doctors with little hands and not-so-nice doctors with bigger hands and cold instruments. She redefined pain tolerance.
And then, luckily, we got pregnant again. Miraculously (and surprisingly) with twins — an incredible blessing after having lost two. After making it past the first trimester of worry and caution and fear, we were off. She had double the hormones. Including the special kind of hormone that made her smell me from the other side of the apartment, when I had just gotten out of the shower, to tell me I still need to wash my feet. She had to referee the 4 a.m. fighting embryos, scrambling for position like Shaq and Yao in the paint. The discomfort in her feet, her back, her legs...just about every square inch was affected in some way. And then the delivery (sweet relief — a C-Section)...and then quickly back to her new reality. Nursing two screaming infants who didn't know where or how the hell to get their milk, and then, to make that more fun: mastitis, which turned her into a pumping and nursing machine 24 hours a day for three months straight. I have not seen anyone that determined to squeeze the living bejesus out of breasts since Dan Goldstein in the 6th grade.
Through it all, we have been extremely blessed with the way things turned out and are not going to push our luck. When we decided for sure we were not going to have any more kids, I thought the very least I could do to show my appreciation for Halfmama was to take one for the team, since she has taken so many. I don't think it quite evens things out (she still gets the cramps real bad), but physically, without removing my prostate with some needle nose pliers, I don't think I can do much more compared to what she's been through. And that is the realist in me.
The sappy side thinks my 3-year-old son and daughter still smell great, and besides some Hugh Grant movies, they're more than we could have hoped for and all we'll ever need.