send lawyers, guns and money (and wet wipes)

A while back, I spent  time with some friends plus their friends, whom I’d never met. The friends of friends had their kids with them. We were hanging out in the great outdoors, a long walk from a bathroom and running water, when one of the kids freaked out about something on his hands. His mom suggested he rub her water bottle to use the condensation to try to clean off. I reached into my bag and pulled out some wet wipes.

This caused the kid’s mother to gasp and say, “Wow. I’m a MOM, and I don’t even have those in my bag.” I found the comment odd but didn’t dwell on it. Surely she wasn’t suggesting that only a person who has given birth could have the foresight to bring something to clean one’s hands.

Later in the day, the kids were playing and one screamed as if a limb (body, not tree) had just been chopped off. I looked around, saw the kid was fine and then returned to my glass of wine. The mother said, “As a MOM, I’m used to children screaming. If there’d been a problem, I would’ve known.”

Now keep in mind, I heard the scream, turned my head, quickly evaluated, then turned back around. I didn’t raise my eyebrow or make a comment or at all suggest this chick wasn’t watching her kids. But this behavior continued the rest of the weekend. Everything was “As a mom…,” “When you have kids…” or “Wow, you’re so organized!,” as if women my age who didn’t procreate are slovenly girl-women.

Perhaps after listening to this chick rattle off the litany of things she had going on with the kids that week, between soccer practice, doctor’s appointments, iPad upgrades and the like, I should have responded with, “I don’t have to plan out my time because I CAN DO WHATEVER THE FUCK I WANT.”

Being a parent is an awesome responsibility, and I respect the effort that goes into raising children. And, not being a parent, I’m sure I don’t truly get the sacrifices, joy, fear and wonder that go into creating and nurturing another human being.

That being said, this lack of experience doesn’t make me a lesser adult. It doesn’t mean I go tripping through life, half-buzzed and looking for the next party. Parents aren’t super-human, and non-parents aren’t sub-human. We’re all just people, doing the best we can with what we have.

Paid for by the “We may not have kids but we do have a monkey that we like to dress up, which is almost the same” PAC


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11 responses to “send lawyers, guns and money (and wet wipes)”

  1. If I had it to do over again I would have drowned them when they were puppies. Hell, I may drown them still.

  2. Crystal, I have a wonderful woman who has worked for me for 18 years as my bookeeper here at the lumberyard. She is probably the smartest and most trustworthy person I know. Her and her husband decided a long time ago to not do the child thing. She is no less a person because they made that decision. I have high respect for her life choices. She has watched me and Debbie do the kid thing and has watched my kids grow up and I think she respects me for the choices I have made.
    I don’t tell you this because I am validating your life or mine, just a story to tell you!! We all do live with the choices we make.
    That was profound wasn’t it???

    By the way… should meet some of the “super-moms” I get to deal with when their boys enter our basketball program. My bullshit-ometer is set pretty low these days but my eye rolling reaction is set high. I’ve learned not to react until the extreme behavior sets in and just screams for a parental-back-to-reality coach talk!!

    • Jim, I see a lot of those “super-moms” on facebook, touting how awesome and wonderful and GREAT, SO, SO GREAT! their lives are. Must be exhausting to constantly have to tell people how perfect your life is.

      The rest of us will be over here, with dinner a little burnt, the house slightly messy, the dogs running around in circles and our shirts untucked, having a beer and a few laughs and enjoying not having to be anything but people. Whether we’re doing that with kids in the room or not.

  3. It irks me when people act like spitting out a kid is some sort of miracle that magically transports them into a higher level of sentience. So, you decided (or possibly didn’t bother deciding at all and it just happened – a miracle!) to opt into your uterus’ procreation options, good for you, hope you don’t care all that much for sleep or owning stuff that isn’t covered in slobber and/or feces. As a non-procreating human, I don’t really have much to say about it, except, make sure you keep your little yard apes out of my hair, please, and just because you have grown numb to your little angel’s incessant screaming, the rest of us haven’t, so keep a muzzle on ’em.

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