Bye bye baby.

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“Are you done having kids?”

It’s a common question. The question starts after the first kid and never stops until you start complaining of hot flashes.

My answer: Yes. Done. Final answer. You will not change my mind. Why do people try to change your mind? I’m not saying this in a mean way. This isn’t a post where I explain how offensive it is to ask this question. I’m not offended. I am just sure of my answer.

I love babies. I do. But I love handing them back to their mothers more.

I made a list. How to know when you’re done with babies – BAM let’s go:

You’re at peace in the Target infant section.

You don’t hear a clock ticking. You don’t feel anything. No, wait – you do feel something. Relief. You walk through the infant aisle at Target and you’re relieved you’re not starting all over again. I know better than to swoon at the newborn clothes. You can’t trick me Target, not in that section anyway.

You push your youngest to grow up.

Are you done playing with these barbies? No. Are you done playing now? No. Are you done now? Hmm, I don’t really play with those anymore. SOLD! TO THE STRESSED OUT WOMAN PUSHING A STROLLER AT THE GARAGE SALE.

Your frequent flyer miles go up.

You’re not the asshole on the plane anymore. Stop – I’m not calling parents that bring their toddlers on a plane assholes. You’re not. I actually feel sorry for you. I’ve been there. I know how you feel and I’m tearing up just thinking of it. You feel like an asshole. Booking a flight with the kids doesn’t scare the living hell out of you anymore because iPods are the new babysitter on a plane.

You break out the red lipstick and heels.

Smokin’ hot dates are back! Fire! Having older kids relieves the dependency on parents. You can’t go on dates with a baby. Those milk-filled boobs have your kid’s name all over them. If you didn’t breastfeed, that’s cool – your kid’s name is on the dark circles under your eyes. Go reserve the best table in your city. Get drunk at the bar together. Grow out that mom haircut. Take a last minute trip to Costa Rica. Let your sexual goddess be free. Your body is all yours now. Oh, but you might want to muffle that sexual goddess. Your older kids know what you’re doing. That’s gross.

Your minivan love cloud has lifted.

Did I really drive that? Was my car really this messy? Go buy something sporty. And that soccer mom minivan is not considered “sporty.” I’m talking about a car that’s impossible to fit a carseat in. Genius idea – leave the minivan for your bum teenager. Evil, hilarious, and cheap.

You begin purchasing white couches.

It was a lost battle from the moment you peed on a stick. White couches do not mix with kids. Don’t even look at the Pottery Barn catalog. Toss it. And while we’re at it, toss that Victoria Secret catalog too. Lies, I tell you. Lies. You’ll never have nice things. Not while your kids are eating cheerios and taking a dump in their diaper on the couch. You’ll get there one day. On that day, you’ll only have yourself to blame for the red wine stain.

May I just say: the pool becomes relaxing again. 

Your kids are masters at swimming by now, they might even be Red Cross certified. Sit back, grab a magazine, wave at the newbie mom in the ankle deep water, and float away. Welcome. Your older kids will still push your raft over. I didn’t say parenting in the pool becomes a vacation.

You take naps.

Let me rephrase that. You take naps when you want to. None of this sleep when your baby sleeps. You can sleep in on weekends. You can even bribe your kids to make you breakfast in bed for the small price of a destroyed kitchen.

You leave the teaching to the professionals.

Don’t cross the street without looking both ways. Brush your teeth before bed. Just use a calculator to figure out the tip. That’s the extent of explaining life lessons to your kids. I don’t even know what common core is. It’s best to let it go and let the teachers explain how 7 + 5 = regrouping ten ones as a ten, that equals 12. Here’s my way – I counted on my fingers. Maybe it’ll stick with your kids.

 

I had babies young. My 20s is a era gone. I wasn’t like most 20-somethings. I never explored different cities with a backpack. I didn’t go to dive bars with friends. I wasn’t able to focus on a career I was actually good at. I survived early motherhood. I miss parts of it but life goes on. I am at peace watching my two daughters become women. I can go back to being just me – whoever that is.

Yes. Done. Final answer.

 

 

16 thoughts on “Bye bye baby.

  1. My kids are in their 20’s now. I’m amazed that they made it into their 20’s as intelligent, well adjusted human beings considering they had me for a mother. LOL! But I knew I was done when I could look at a mom struggling with a baby or toddler and think, “I so do NOT miss that.” My son’s girlfriend already knows that she does not want children. And I say, good for her! If that’s how she feels then she shouldn’t have them. And she shouldn’t be pressured into it. She’s okay with her decision. My son is okay with it. It’s no one’s business but theirs. And no, I don’t need to be a grandma, thanks for asking. I’m okay with that too. 🙂

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    • I admire people that don’t want kids. I admire that they are sure they know what they want. And yes, I look at little kids and babies and think that same thing – “so do NOT miss that.” Oooo the grandma question – do people really ask you if you’re ready to be grandma? Ah!

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      • When people find out my son’s girlfriend doesn’t want kids and I say good for her for knowing what she wants, they ask, “Don’t you want to be a grandma?” The thing is, whether or not I want to be a grandma is irrelevant. I’m not going to try to guilt my kids into having children. The world will not come to an end if I don’t have grandchildren. 🙂

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  2. Yes to all these things!!! And might I add that my brother with older daughters (teenagers) really annoys me when he is like, “But seriously. Slow it down. You’re going to miss this.” I want to give him the finger. Even if he’s right.

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  3. Huh. I have 6 and I am 40. I do not feel “done,” nor will I ever. However, “done” we are because I am married to a man who is “done.” I am faced with having to be done when I do not want to be done. It is very hard on me. I know that at age 40, it is likely time to feel alright about moving on. I want to feel o.k. with it. It just makes me so sad. I spoke to a woman who helped me a little, to feel better. She said my “adventure” as a mom is not over. She said I have a lot to look forward to as my kids grow into their teens. I hope so.

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    • I’m sorry. That would be hard if I wasn’t at the same page as my spouse.
      I have friends that will have babies until they no longer can. But for me, I just can’t do it. A part of me thinks moms of a lot of kids are just better at being a mom. Maybe they are? I don’t know. But I’m happy with two. I hope you find happiness on your adventure. 🙂 Your kids are lucky to have a good mom.

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      • I should probably just try to understand my husband better. I know he probably has a mindset closer to yours. Would you help me understand yours so I can understand my husband’s?

        It seems in your post that you assume that people will understand why you feel the way you do, It is obvious to you and many of the commenters, but not to me. Will you help me to see your ooint of view so that I can move on and feel happy in my new stage of “I will never have more”?

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  4. Hmmm…sure, I’ll try. I guess what I’m trying to say is raising babies/little kids takes my constant attention. In a way, I felt my only purpose was to be a mom when my girls were little. I didn’t feel like a wife, I didn’t even know what I liked to do for fun. That’s not to say the kids weren’t fun or I didn’t like being a mom. If you were to ask me what my favorite kid age is, I will always tell you – the age they are now (no matter what age they are).
    I like giving Emma and Kate my full attention but still letting them become independent. I’m happy giving my husband more attention too. Our conversation isn’t always about the kids anymore. We can enjoy hobbies together. I feel like we’re dating again.
    I can feel your sadness – I miss the little baby kisses and wobbly walks. I get it.
    I get my baby fix with my nieces and nephews the moment they are born.
    But I guess, for me, I like watching my two kids grow up. They really are fun as big kids too.
    I hope I helped a little bit?

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    • And if I could jump in here… that’s exactly how I felt about being “done” too, Julie. But I’d also like to add that, even though my “kids” are in their 20’s, I’m still their mom. Sure, they’re more independent and have their own ideas, but they still “need” me. They still ask for my help, for my opinions, and there’s still things I can teach them. I may be “done” BIRTHING babies, I’m by no means done being a mom.

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