I’m not exactly sure how they do it – what type of voodoo magic babies possess – but in the span of two short weeks, I’ve gone from being adamant that this would be our last child, to devising lists of names for our third and fourth children, respectively. Seriously. What is wrong with me? From a practical standpoint, we should be done. Daycare costs alone render us home-bound and vacation-less for the next five years, to say nothing of college looming in the distant future. But…I don’t know…maybe there’s no room for practicality when it comes to babies…? For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted children – lots of them. Maybe it runs in my blood – my mom is one of nine children; my dad is one of five. Or maybe this post-partum period is a little like being intoxicated, and I shouldn’t make any rash decisions in this current state of mind. Either way, wouldn’t it be nice if decisions of the heart never had to consider the scales of the mind?
Oh, to be a character out of a Willa Cather novel – a romanticized notion of days gone by – to be of the earth and work for the earth, with dozens of (ok, I’d settle for four) sturdy, ruddy-faced children toiling away beside me…to feel the goodness of planting and tending and harvesting and…yeah yeah, I know. I’m not a pioneer woman. I probably wouldn’t last one week on a farm. I don’t know the first thing about tending to farm animals and I don’t particularly like their smell. But, still. I’d like to think I could hack it. The question that remains is why. Why do I think I need to live on a farm if I want more than two kids? Do I feel as though then, maybe, the multitude of children would be justified? That there would be some practical “use” for them? Again with this notion of practicality! What gives? Sadly, in our day in age, I’ve overheard judgmental comments and seen arched eyebrows aimed at families that stretch beyond the number four, and I’m not sure where the antagonism comes from. Surely, it’s a lot of work, but isn’t it for that individual family to judge their own capabilities? I would hope so.
At any rate, maybe I should just simmer down, pour myself a big cup of reality, and look out the window at my two wild weimaraners, who are currently running laps around each other in the frozen snow and barking with insane happiness at the balmy 22 degrees it’s become outside. Maybe I do already have four children. Maybe I am more of a pioneer woman than I give myself credit for.