Last week Courtney (our neighbor) tried to give birth in my living room using an exercise ball. Yup, Demetri came home to find a significantly pregnant woman in his house bouncing up and down on a big, blue ball while I shouted, “Puuush!” Demetri, to his credit, only paused ever so slightly before he said, “Well . . . congratulations” and took a seat on the couch. The man didn’t even grab a beer or anything. We had hot water and towels on standby. And, for some inexplicable reason, Demetri’s new chain saw. Plus, just to be thorough, we *all* ate spicy Mexican food to ensure that the baby would fall out.
It totally didn’t work. The baby that Courtney ate didn’t arrive until yesterday. Tessa (Courtney’s daughter and Zoey’s friend), came over to tell us the news. Zoey and I had been playing Twister* in the yard. Tessa looked kind of shell shocked – eyes wide and a cross between a smile and a gasp on her face. “I’m a big sister!” she announced. We all oooh-ed and ahhh-ed. I may have forced Tessa and Zoey to do The Happy Dance with me. Tessa continued to look shifty eyed as she said, “He’s a brother.”
“Yay!” We all yelled, “A BROTHER!” Tessa didn’t look convinced. In fact, she looked like she wanted to say, I wanted a sister, losers. But Tessa is the most polite child ever so she just looked up at me and smiled, albeit uncertainly. Then Tessa was carried home by her Nana and Auntie to have a bath so she could go visit her new brother.
After Tessa left, Zoey shuffled her feet in the grass while she bit her bottom lip and scrunched up her eyes — a sure sign of heavy duty brain processing. “Huh,” she said, “So there’s a baby. For Tessa.” She shuffled in circles, thinking thinking thinking.
“Well,” I said, “the baby is part of Tessa’s family. He’s not really for Tessa.”
“Well,” Zoey countered, ” I don’t have a baby for me. I would like a little sister.” Then she looked at me like, Get on that already. Can’t you people take a hint?
I tried to catch Demetri’s eye but he was determinedly looking away (THANKS FOR THAT, SWEETIE). “Huh. Um. Well,” I started out brilliantly. “You’re not going to have a little sister. Or brother. You have . . . a cat.” Zoey looked at me, cocked her hip, and folded her arms waiting for me to continue. “Some families have one child, some have three, some have none.” Zoey bit her lip while I took her hands. “This family has one child: YOU!” I finished a little too perkily. Zoey dropped her gaze and went back to playing Twister wrong (which annoys me to no end. There are RULES, people! RULES!)
Well, I thought, flipping my hair back, That went swimingly. I settled myself back into the patio chair feeling efficient and a little smug. My motherly job completed, I leaned back and put my feet up on the table.
“Mommy?” Zoey didn’t even look up from trying to stand on her head. “Just so you know, cats are not babies, you moron.” Ok, so she didn’t say this last part. But I’m positive she thought it. Or at least she would have if she knew the word. Having been put in my place, I took my feet off the table and realized that I am the mother of only one child for good reason — I can’t explain ANYTHING. It’s a good thing Courtney didn’t give birth in my living room; Imagine the irreparable damage I would’ve caused then.
CONGRATULATIONS COURTNEY, TONY, TESSA, AND BABY ANTONIO!!!!
*If being bossed around by a three year old, using the spinner as a hat, and playing hop-scotch on the game mat counts as”playing Twister”