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Saturday, September 1, 2012

29 (not) forever

Today, my daughter is 29 months old.
I stopped counting in months sometime around 2 years old.

Certainly, the months still make a difference. You can tell a 26 month old from a 32 month old, but they're both still "2". But you feel dumb saying, she's 28 months. For a time I said, she turned 2 in April. Now I say, she's about 2 and a half.

Since she was born April 1st, the 1st of each month always strikes me. And yesterday, it struck me - 29. I was 29-years-old when I met her dear-old daddy.

29-years-old. That's the age people (jokingly or seriously) say they are when people ask & they don't want to say.

I guess there's something magical about it.
There was for me.
Life. is different now.
My path. diverged.

Have you watched Dora or Diego? If you've not had the pleasure, let me tell you - there's a frequent question - "Which path should we go down?" 
Sometimes there's 2 choices, other times 3. 
There's always a correct choice. 
They always tell you what was down the other path.


So different than life.

In life, there are infinite choices. 
Maybe they don't feel infinite at the time, but in truth they are.
There's is certainly not one correct choice. 
There are better choices.

But it's entirely subjectively, never concrete. Nothing so delightfully simple as "We chose the path with the cuddly animal we were helping. Down the other path was a baby-eating snake."
Good choice. Go, us.

I chose a path. 
I'm happy with it. Very.
I suppose you could call it a right path.

Sometimes I get a glimpse of the other path.
And I can't deny it's appeal.
Couples without children (and I'm looking at you, H&K) - your travel pics and nights on the town, microbrew tours and so on - all of it is right up my alley. But I do such things rarely. Because of the little girl sleeping on the other side of the house.

Really, I don't know how to go on from here. Without sounding like - a) I want to trade my daughter for a few beers or a trip to Greece. Or - b) Going on & on  about why I'm glad I chose my path (or it chose me?) and unintentionally making it sound like I think you made a bad choice.
Neither is true.
I hope only this - that all of my friends (single, married with or without children) are happy & fulfilled. A tall order really.

But why am I even pondering these choices?
Yes, there's the 29//29 thing.
But more.
We're making the choice again.
Another one? 
Many people assume that having one means you'll have two for sure, 3 or more is questionable. But 2 certainly.
Not us. We pondered. Our answer evolved.

At this point, signs point to yes.
The intention is now there. If not the full certainty that was there the first time.
I'm scared.
Life is good now. Why rock the boat?

Well, again - I don't want to sound to parents of onlies like I judge your choice. I do not. I still hold it at the back of my head as "maybe that would be the best thing for us."

But then I see my kiddo looking at pairs or groups of children. At the park today, "Look at those kids having so much fun." Tonight at the Nebraska bar, just looking and wondering about a table with a bunch of kids.

I've read the studies. I know only children can be every bit as happy as (or -ier than) those with siblings. I know the benefits of being an only child for her. I know the benefits of having an only child for me/us. I find them compelling.
Hence the lack of full certainty.

Unfortunately, Dora is not going to show up and point me down the correct path. 
For better or for worse, you can't go back and "try out" the other choice. Quantum physics and all that.
Fortunately, I think it is highly unlikely that there are baby-eating snakes down either path.

Fate will decide, I suppose. Also biology. Also my frequent inability to stay awake through her bedtime.
Wish us luck.
And much happiness to each of you on whatever path you choose.

Here's a little help ---
image

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