My friend called me yesterday and asked if there was something I wanted to tell her.
And I said, No, why?
And she said, Are you sure?
And I said, Ummmmmm, yes?
And she said, Take your time, I can wait.
So I started to panic.
What had I done now? How embarrassing was it?
Were there pictures?
Did I look fat? Who was I going to have to sleep with to make sure they didn’t wind up on YouTube?
Did I look skinny? Who was I going to have to sleep with to make sure they wound up on YouTube?
I slapped my forehead several times, trying to wake up my brain so that it could begin the arduous process of searching through mental check lists to find one appropriate for this scenario. I keep a wide variety of these check lists tucked away in my cerebral cortex. They come in handy when paranoia screeches up my brain stem and squats on my frontal lobe.
Remember, just because you’re paranoid doesn’t meant they’re not out to get you. Have you learned nothing from this blog, for crying out loud?
I found one pretty quickly:
- Did I cheat on my husband behind my back? I didn’t think so. Does googling Christopher Meloni count? Since when?
- Did I cheat on her husband?
- Did I cheat on her?
- Ewwww. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
- Did I cheat at Bunco? I was too busy stuffing my face to remember.
- Did I cheat on my exercise routine by actually adopting one?
- And finally … no damn way did she see me sneak those cookies off her counter. Besides, her son already copped to it. Not my problem the kid can’t count.
So I said, No! What are you getting at?
And she yelled, Are you telling me you did NOT give birth without telling me?
Blink. Blink. Stare.
I laughed hysterically and then suddenly stopped.
Hang on, I said.
I did a quick check of my nether regions just to make sure they hadn’t up and skedaddled to greener, more fertile pastures when I wasn’t looking.
Whew. Still there, still looking … there.
So I hollered, What in God’s name have you been smoking? Can I have some?
And that’s how I found out that Helena has been busy telling everyone she knows as well as complete strangers that she now has a brand spanking new little brother.
Needless to say, this came as a bit of a shock to me, considering the cargo ship called MY UTERUS sailed off into the sunset many moons ago and was recently replaced by a big ass freighter called PERIMENOPAUSE.
And then I realized what Helena meant.
Well, not Ozeas, per se, because that would have been weird and slightly illegal and I think we can all agree that nothing screams CHRISTMAS SUCKS louder than the strung-out meth addict sharing your cell on Christmas Eve while your wife runs around, trying to make bail.
Nate gift wrapped a folder detailing our sponsorship of Ozeas from Plan USA.
I don’t know what shocked me more … the fact that Nate had unglued his eyes from his crackberry long enough to not only notice my existence, but that I was also bawling my eyes out whenever Plan USA’s commercial ran across the TV screen?
Or that he bought something over the Internet that did not resemble an $80 Chia Pet or a framed certificate declaring our kids the proud owners of stars in the universe for the bargain price of $Holy Shit, We Could Rent the Space Shuttle and Grab The Real Thing For This Price and some odd cents.
But as it turns out, he did the former and not the latter and we now sponsor little three year old Ozeas who has eyes that wrap my soul in a warm, soft, fuzzy blanket and make me want to swim to Brazil this instant and hug him for an hour and fix the hole in his shorts with my duct tape and feed him PB&J sandwiches.
So now, Zoe and Helena have the little brother they’ve been begging for since forever. And while they won’t get the chance to snuggle with him and sing him songs and wipe away his tears and kiss his ouchies and wait at the bus stop with him, neither will they get the chance to order him out of their rooms and yell at him for spying on them and make him retrieve the phone out of the toilet and play the game of I’M THE BOSS OF YOU that they’ve raised to an art form.
It’s bittersweet, to say the least.
But they can ensure that he’ll have food to eat and clothes to wear and an education to learn. They can send him hope and hugs and kisses and love and compassion and size 3T t-shirts along with their letters.
They can make a difference in his life.
And he can make a difference in theirs. They haven’t realized that part yet.
And there were no mucus plugs or bloody show or ruptured membranes or GIVE ME DRUGS OR YOU DIE contractions involved on my part.
I did not have to earn my 113th stretch mark in this entire process.
Nate did good.