April 16, 2005

Just Say No

My 8 year old crawled up in my lap this evening. I just sat there inhaling him. I love my boys. I was kissing all over his little neck, his cheeks, his forehead and I said, “Who gives you the most smooches?” and his reply was, “You, Mimie (my Mom) and Aunt Morrigan”. I thought it was so funny that it was all the women in my family. We are a very smoochy family. My boys get a whole lotta lovin’ when around my side of the family. Odd how families are so different.

So I was over at one of my favorite bloggers, Anita of Fighting Inertia, and she had posted about an incident that happened to her in the supermarket the other day. Her two boys are around the ages of my two eldest. She was shocked because… she had that ‘ovarian shift’ as my sister calls it. It is not something men relate to, obviously, as they have no ovaries, but women… y’all know what I’m talking about. You see this precious sweet thing and you think, “Oh my God. I need one of those.”

It has happened to me. I’m the first to admit, I am a great baby mother. I LOVE babies. LOVE them. And… although I may not be a great mother in general (I’m an OK Mom, not a great Mom… I have to work at being a good Mom), I am in fact a GREAT baby Mom. Babies get a whole lotta lovin’ from me. I could smooch, love, and care for a baby all day long. Whereas other Mothers would grouse and complain about how their infant was up all the time, I never hated those 2AM feedings. I would bask in the smell of my wonderful baby and quietly rock and nurse, stroking and kissing my baby. Side Note: my thoughts were not so loving when my toddlers and pre-schoolers would wake me up at 2AM. Blech.

Anyway, I love babies.

But I am here to announce to you, I have not had an ‘ovarian shift’ in 6 years. Hmm. Uncanny how that coincides with the birth of my last child.

That is right. Since my last child, I have not wanted another baby. I will hold other people’s babies, I have this urge to kiss the back of their neck (bad stuff like puke and drool don’t typically make the back of their neck), I will fuss over them and carry on, but then… I am very happy to hand the baby back to their Mama. Don’t get me wrong. I still LOVE babies, I just don’t want another.

Before it was permanently ensured that there would be no more children in this house, after my 3rd son was born I used to say to my husband, “If I get pregnant again, I guaran-damn-tee you, you’ll find me hanging in the shower.” The thought of having more children, gives me shudders.

And it’s caused me trouble too. There is a Mom at school who I adore. She had three boys and this past August, her back was to me… and when she turned around, she was 5 months pregnant. My eyes popped open, she smiled at me and greeted me in her sweet Louisiana drawl and BEFORE I COULD STOP MYSELF, I said, “I know the name of a good urologist.” There was no, “Congratulations!” or “Look at you, girl! How great!” . it was an open and honest horror and a “I know a good urologist.” When I realized what I said, I clamped my hand over my mouth and apologized profusely. She laughed and said it was fine and with very blushed cheeks and hot face, I proceeded to do the formalities and found out she was having another boy.

Two months after the baby was born her husband called me for the name of that good urologist.

I don’t think she’ll be having that ‘ovarian shift’ anymore either.

Posted by Boudicca at April 16, 2005 10:05 PM

I love holding babies and giving them back! Since I've never had my own, that works well for me ...

Posted by: Barb at April 16, 2005 10:52 PM

Around here the phrase for "ovarian shift" is "my uterus went 'ping!'"

Only happens when TNT sees a VERY well-behaved child. All it takes to fix the problem is hearing one fuss, cry, or whine, and WHAM!... spell is broken.

Only happens to me when you ladies start talking about how much you love being a daddy's girl.

Posted by: Harvey at April 17, 2005 12:07 PM

I want to be an aunt! My sister turns 17 this summer...so it'll be a while (hopefully!!)

But, my mom knows she has a better chance of getting a grandchild out of my sister than me.

As much as I'm not ready for kids, I am excellent with them...all ages.

Posted by: Sissy at April 17, 2005 01:47 PM

Contagion calls those "Pregmones", special hormones that pregant women and small children give off that make other women want to breed.

Posted by: Graumagus at April 17, 2005 06:04 PM

When ever I get those feelings my hubby takes me to McDonalds and throws me in the play center and holds the door.

I last about 5 minutes and then I am set for a few more months.

Posted by: Machelle at April 17, 2005 08:20 PM

Having taken 5 years and several hundred thousand dollars to GET my "trifecta" of boys, I'm well aquainted with the "ovarian shift". In those five years it was almost painful. I used to go to the grocery store and understand how women could steal a baby. I felt it so strongly. I called it "baby lust".

I'm just like you, Bou. I'm a stellar baby mama. I. AM. A. STAR. I had three at a time, afterall. I loved everything about having babies and small toddlers. I didn't mind diapers, I am a fiend about keeping their faces clean and slobber free, I always had coordinated CLEAN outfits, I kept "poop charts" for heaven's sake. My husband and I are great at teaching them to sleep, stretching out the night feeding times and "crying it out". If you do it right it takes about one night. Really. Babies are sweet-smelling, snuggly little balls of pure love. Toddlers are fast-moving little balls of pure love. I. Love. Babies.

As a mother to actual kids, I struggle everyday. I love my boys more than life, but it's a lot of hard work with not nearly as much instant gratification and proof that you're doing a good job. I know exactly how you feel. We're both probably much better mothers than we give ourselves credit for. It's the whole clean-clothes-slobber-free-face thing. Our hard work isn't so readily apparent - it becomes apparent when they do wonderful things that tug at your heart when you least expect it.

Just let me tell you since I've had these boys, everyone asks the question "So when are you going to try for a girl". I just laugh in an ever so slightly crazy way and tell them my three are plenty. I thought for sure that after we left the baby stage I'd get that "baby lust" again. Not once. Weird.

Posted by: Momotrips at April 18, 2005 07:33 PM

Since the birth of #2 14 months + one day after #1, I have not wanted another baby. My husband was 'fixed' 6 weeks after #2 was born. I was THAT sure we were finished. We each have 3 siblings, and we knew we were going to have 2 kids. They keep us very busy, and I am a very fulfilled Mommy. But 2 is enough. I have babies on both sides of the family & all over my neighborhood to love & return. It works for me!

Posted by: Jen h at April 18, 2005 07:58 PM

I love it - "ovarian shift" - I'll have to remember that phrase. Who could forget it?

The funny thing about me is that I was definitely NOT a great baby mother. No, not at all. I'm much better with children who are able to verbalize their needs. LOVE 4 year olds!!!! That's my perfect age so far . . .

I just hope my ovaries stop shifting in the middle of Wegmans.

Posted by: Anita at April 19, 2005 03:19 PM

Great phrase. I always wanted a big family; unfortunately, that's never going to happen now.

Bou, I think you're a great mom. The loving stories you tell of all 3 kids is just amazing. Now that I have 1 boy, and know how much work it involves, I know I'd be absolutely insane to have more. So whenever I need a kid fix I volunteer at his school for a couple of hours, boy does that give me some reality check.

Posted by: michele at April 20, 2005 08:25 PM