Thursday, October 28, 2010


Look, listen, pay attention now.
This is important.
I just want everyone to know that I'm writing this post whilst hysterical with The Elder's previous post about shitting her pants at work and then saying she had to go without underwear all day and ended up with something she could only assume was diaper rash.
That's some funny shit right there. (Pun fully intended).
I'm changing The Elder's name to "Sharta" now that I know she shit herself. Especially since she reported she shit herself when she thought she was only going to fart. See? See how that works?
A fart that ends up being a shit is called a shart. Thus, my new friend Sharta. Kind of like Marta, but better.
But that's not what my post is about.
It's about going pee pee in my pants.
OK, no, wait - it's about having babies.
Except it's not about having babies.
Or, wait, no - it's about not having ever had a baby and still running into this pee pee in my pants thing.
Seriously, I thought the pee pee pants while laughing, sneezing, surprised, startled or otherwise momentarily out of control for one reason or another was an issue that landed in the camp of women who've had a baby or ten.
The first time I peed my pants as an adult doesn't count. I was 29-years-old and just tipped over the edge of a 5 story downhill run of a roller coaster in Dallas. I screamed like a 12-year-old girl, dug my fingernails into my poor friend who was screaming with his mouth open so wide that I thought we were going to discover his dentures embedded in the forehead of the man behind us when the ride ended, and promptly peed my pants.
Just a little.
When that 'just a little' thing happens, these are a few of the things I say.
1) Oh, I've peed, but not a full on pee.
2) Oops! Just a lil' spriggle.
2) Oh hell, should have told me your joke was going to be that good so I could have crossed my legs before I laughed.
(Yes, I know I put 1, 2, 2 when it should have been 1, 2, 3. But I'm getting to the depressing part and don't want to go back or I'll never write about it.)
The first time I pee peed in my pants (just a lil' spriggle, mind you) was a few summers ago on my porch. I was sitting around with a few friends and experienced some kind of half sneeze, half laugh, half cough.
(Yes, I realize 3 halves makes more than 1 whole, but I'm still continuing to type without going back, so deal, please, I really want to write this.)
I said, "Oh fuck! I just peed a little. Not a full on piss. Just a lil' spriggle."
My girlfriends laughed and said stuff like,
"Oh God! I've done that!"
"I have to cross my legs when I sneeze."
"I just kind of bear down over myself when I laugh really hard so I don't pee. The unintended consequence is that people think I think their jokes are so funny that I can't stand up straight because I'm laughing so hard."
I went inside and changed my panties and pants. Upon inspection, it really just just a lil' spriggle of pee.
On the way out the door I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror. It stopped me dead in my tracks. I looked at myself in a way that I rarely do; with a deepness I cannot explain. Right into my own eyes. Not checking anything; hair, eyebrows, make-up. Just stopped in my tracks and staring.
It all came over me again. Childless me. I couldn't believe it was back. And this time I knew it was staying. That I wasn't going to get some kind of pass. That I was going to go back out onto my porch and look at my friends who reported also peeing their pants and keep thinking they do it because they have given birth.
When I was 35-years-old I was terribly alone and single. My personal life was a mess. And my proverbial biological clock was ticking so hard that it drove me to my knees. Literally. Down on my knees and kind of leaning, drooping, sagging against my bed crying. It was awful. I fucking hated everything about myself, my life, my ovaries and uterus.
I talked honestly about it with a friend. She had me write about all of the qualities a parent should have: Nurturing, tenderness, honesty, teacher, ability to ask for help, willingness to learn, acceptance, etc...
And then she told me to go carry out those qualities upon the world.
She actually said it that way. Or, well, this way, "Get up off yer fuckin' cryin' ass and quit acting like it's only people with babies who get to be nurturing, tender, honest and all of that shit. Shut the fuck up and go. You have those qualities already and have no right to keep them to yourself just because you don't have a baby. Go! Go take that shit out on the entire world!"
And I did.
I literally signed up to do volunteer work that exposed me to human beings, young and old, who needed the exact qualities a person needs to take care of a baby, or any other living human who cannot care for and defend him/herself. Since that time I've literally traveled the world doing this volunteer work. I've read countless pages of information to help me do this, written informational pamphlets and reports to help others do it, talked, presented, given, directed, negotiated, on and on and on with everything I've got to make the world a safe place for at least a few people. Probably more than a few, but most of them were so incapable of knowing they were being helped that I didn't get all wrapped up into being thanked. That's not why I was doing it anyway.
And then this past April rolled around and I started closing doors. I've got to be at home more. I can't be reading, writing, teaching, helping as much as I have been. There is a business to run that is one of my dreams and I want it to succeed. Doing both is impossible.
So, in February of 2011 my volunteerism at that level will end. And then I will be thinking more about never having had a child.
I dream of it; having a child. I always have a baby or a toddler that is mine. She is in my arms and looks just like me. Sometimes she is crying, others she is laughing, sleeping, simply resting herself in my arms. No matter what, she is happy. She is safe and I am always overcome with the bond she and I share and something inside of me that is fully capable of killing to keep her safe.
There are a million explanations I've given myself about why I've woken up with tears pooled in my eyes after one of those dreams. Allergies, not enough sleep, too much on my mind.
It's not that volunteerism didn't work, it's just that the hole inside of me is the size and shape of my child.
My days of menstruation are over. Menopause suddenly started and suddenly stopped for me when I was 39.
Today I'm just empty about it. Surrounded on the outside by reminders of what has never and will never be on the inside. It's as if all I can see is one billboard after the other filled with math equations and know I've never learned to count. As if I'm wanting to hug a tree but have never been shown what one is. As if the only thing I want for is sunshine on my face, but have been shoved into a dirty hole in the ground.
This time it won't pass until I'm into my 60's. I'm sure of it. Until then I will be doing this thing I do about wondering about adopting a child.
Don't try to talk me out of this emptiness. I want it. I want to want something this badly. I want to wake up crying about it, to be stopped dead in my tracks with my own reflection and have the world "childless" bear down on me.
There is nothing wrong with wanting something this badly. I will take it out on something. I will.


  1. Just when I was trying to lighten things up a little around here. By the way, my new stripper name is Sharta.

  2. Ugh.

    Okay, first, you made me go snuggle in with my two sleeping girls and cry like a dumbass with gratitude that I got the children I wanted. I too was in my 30s with a jacked personal life and no bebes or good man in sight. I cried many nights home alone while friends got married and started families thinking it's just never going to happen for me. When my husband and I started trying, I was getting up there and working with one ovary and spotty periods and I got my self prepared that it might not happen. When it did, I spent the whole nine months terrified it would be taken from me, that something would happen. I had so many friends that were unable to have the children that they wanted that I almost got a kind of survivor's guilt, like why me, I didn't deserve it any more than they did, just dumb luck.

    Even now, I force myself not to imagine the million ways they could be hurt, I already have issues with anxiety and I tell you, having children only makes it worse.

    Although I have seen so many couples have wonderful lives minus the kids, and I think as a culture, we overdo their relative importance to "fulfilling" a woman or making a family but I know you know that. There is no way to just get over not getting something you really want. I think it's even worse when you have a good man, the idea of creating something that is a part of you both, it is so appealing. Kids for me have also been fundamental in healing some of my issues with my own parents. I have a greater empathy for how difficult it is but also a chance to give my children what I didn't have and see the people they are becoming.

    You deserve to feel however you are feeling and I wish that you had what it is you wanted. As an aside, my older two children are my adopted children, my husband is the bio father of all three of our kids. His first wife passed away when my middle daughter was just a few months old. When I got my kids they were 2 and 6 and made the idea of not getting pregnant bearable. They made me a mother. It is certainly not the least complicated route but I know what it gave me and them too. It's an infinitely personal decision but my experience has been wonderful. Our youngest looks just like her dad(and older brother) but poor thing, is so much like me personality wise and my son has been with me so long, he has my sense of humor and argumentativeness. My middle daughter and I look the most alike, funny enough. If you really feel like that hole might stick around, it's worth thinking about.

    Fuck, I'm sorry it didn't happen the way you envisioned it. So many people who can hardly take care of themselves get children so it's hard to see someone who clearly has the skills not get to flex them.

  3. Sharta: I thought I was going to shart today. Luckily I was in the barn and there was a poop rake standing at the ready. Alas, it was only a fart.

    FF: Mostly, I appreciate that you know I have a right to feel the way I want to feel about it. I just cannot imagine how else I would feel. The important thing is I don't let my feelings around this run my world; I have such a fulfilling life that I also cannot imagine letting not getting something I want (even something so huge) ruin my gratitude. I've still got adoption on my mind, but don't feel motivated to consider it completely right now. I keep getting a vision of something else. Mostly more opportunities to share the abilities and qualities I have.
    Yes, there used to be a thing I bought into about a woman not being fully productive if she didn't have children. Not now. It simply is not true. However, I personally do have that hole. And, oddly enough, really am grateful that it bears down on me.

  4. MG - my love. I feel I can call you my love because I now officially love you. You took me from a place of laughing hysterically about Ms. Sharta the Farta to crying at the revelations you shared.

    I have always thought it was four kids (two at once) that caused me to not be able to hold my bladder.) It's not that, it's just gravity - things start to fall when we get older and our bladder has pressure on it when all the rest of it falls on top.

    I love how you are able to capture those intimate moments that happen in our lives when we are faced with ourselves in the mirror. I don't know your pain. I did have a miscarriage and I did go through 10 years of infertility with my second husband but I don't know the pain of a woman who never got to push a baby out of her vagina. I would never want to pretend I understand how much this hurts, on these occasions when it hits you but I do completely get why it hurts.

    When I was pregnant with my 12 yr old son, I almost died from a pulmonary embolism. This meant birth control in the form of a pill was out the window. When I got pregnant again, the doctor told me we had to take special precautions, he sent me to a high risk OB. When it was later discovered I was carrying twins, he told me I had better listen to every word he said or I would most certainly not survive the pregnancy. Living in Wisconsin, I was forced to go to a Catholic hospital where my doctor wrote a letter to the Sisters in charge to request that my tubes be tied after the birth of these babies to prevent any future life threatening pregnancies.

    In my late 30's, with four children and a deadbeat husband, I went through a deeply emotional, dark time, feeling less than a woman because my ability to bring life into this world had been taken from me. That is the only story I have that can even come close to understanding where you are.

    BUT, I also can't help but look at your life, at the hundreds, maybe thousands of people you helped because you didn't have to stay home taking care of your young'ns. You mothered the hell out of all those lost souls.

    I have always wondered why so much of your life has been spent helping the helpless, caring for the ones most people would simply step over and leaving a legacy of love that will be carried forward for many generations to come because you helped so many people break the cycle of addiction and abuse.

    Please my darling. The next time you feel that hole in the shape of a baby - remember how many babies have been or will be born because you, get that, YOU, healed their mama or their daddy. Your womb has been perhaps the most productive womb in the history of time and space. Don't deny it or try to argue with me because it may take three or four generations for all that crap to heal and for healthy, happy babies to be born, but you, my friend did it. You have changed the world as we knew it.

    One day, in the near distant future, there will be people walking this earth who would not be here if not for you. If that's not a mother, I don't know what is.

    And further, let me drive home this ultimately important point. You could have stayed on your knees, feeling sorry for yourself, longing for what you thought would make you whole but YOU did not. God bless the woman who told you to get up and manifest your maternal power in this world. She was your savior and the savior of so many to come.

    Now, that you've done what you were meant to do, if you want to consider adoption, I say listen to that still small voice inside and do what it tells you to do. Any child would hit the jackpot to get you, hell - I'd give you one of my own, but your heart will tell you what is right.

    Thanks so much for this post, that caught me by surprise by making my laugh and cry, but not, at any time, pee my pants.

  5. You know, ZM, you made me think of something I've never thought of.
    Just a few weeks ago a friend of mine was here with her 4-year-old granddaughter. They spent the day with Hellbilly and I and it was great. At first her granddaughter was shy, a little afraid of the horses, even a little crappy and wanting to go home.
    By the end of the day she had figured out Mongo and Hellbilly are loving, fun, safe, honest, interesting and tender people who have her best interest at heart. She didn't want to leave when it was time. Part of the reasoning she gave my friend/her grandma for not leaving was, "But I love Mongo SO, SO, SO much! I can't leave her here!"
    16 years prior to that day I had sat with that child's grandmother and had the 'knock it off with your mother fuckin' bullshit of trying to convince me that you're going to figure out how to successfullly use heroin' talk.
    I had that talk right in front of that child's mother. She was 14 at the time and, due to having a heroin addicted mother, was an adult in every sense of the word other than her chronological age.
    And here they are now - Grandma clean for over 16 years, mother free to be herself, and little grandchild knowing a childhood her grandma and mama never knew.
    Yes - I think I have done something.
    This is good. Thank you so much for writing what you did. It has changed something.
    It's true - almost everywhere I go there is a child (some of them now adults with children of their own) who call me 'Auntie' and love to talk with me, hug me, tell me about their lives.
    In some way, all is good - even great.
    Thank you.

  6. I'm glad you get it. When can I bring my kids out to Missouri to hang with Mongo, Hellbilly and the horsies?

  7. Mongo, you know I get it. I have looked at myself in the mirror with that same accusation/realization. It hits damn hard.

    I also agree with everything Zen Mama said above.

    I wish I could say more but I'm a little speechless right now and wish we could just go get a cup of coffee together and I didn't have to collect my thoughts all at once.

  8. I am 52 and childless. I had three miscarriages. I never felt the rooted urge to have children, but I'm sorry that it didn't happen. My "boss" (quote marks to convey my disdain} feels compelled to say at least once a month "Oh, I keep forgetting, you don't have children so you won't understand."

    Forget my ass.

    Just posted this same comment on Blue's post.

  9. Blues: I'd have coffee with you any day. No need to collect thought around this one - it's a biggie, eh? I promise I would say very, very dirty and twisted things about your home appliances if we started feeling too sad.

    Elder: I just read it on Blues post too. If you'd like, I can meet up with your "boss" and offer to fuck him/her up the ass with a handfull of sand. I promise I would give you a complete report of the freak out that follows.