Due to Extenuating Circumstances

Adventures in Unplanned Parenthood

Archive for the tag “#Mac”

Big Mac Attack

Mac fact: he has asthma. It’s exercise induced but weather extremes, moisture, mold and dust can also aggravate it. We have about 87 little gray inhalers around; I keep one in my car, he has one in his truck, one in his desk, a couple in jackets, I think there’s one in the shed. Those little fuckers are everywhere, would be the salient point.

For Baby, it is Big Boy Bath Time. Instead of putting Baby in his tiny plastic tub, we thought it would be nice for me to get in the bath with him and hold him because he feels like hell. The poor little guy has a bad cold. He’s cranky, stuffy, and weird goobers are coming out of every hole in his face. I briefly considered grinding up Sudafed and putting it in his bottle, but then I remembered I’m a good mother.

Thus, the Earth Mother playbook has been opened. Massages to keep the sinuses draining, humidifiers at night, steam to loosen mucus. I’m a fan of conserving water when possible, so here was my brilliant plan: turn on the shower as hot as it can possibly go, then sit with the baby in the steam. We’ll wait on the floor while the steam loosens his congested nose. As the water goes into the tub, it will have cooled a bit and when we’re all done having our spa treatment we can sit in the tub together as the water will have become a pleasant and soothing temperature. Perfect.

So I get the kid down to his diaper and we sit, breathing in the steam of the hot shower. The door is closed and I’m taking advantage of the acoustics to belt out of some my greater hits, which includes a rousing rendition of Habenera from Carmen where all of the words are replaced with “duh duh duh DUH, duh duh-duh duh. Duh duh duh DAH, buh buh buh BUM.”

I strip down, take off baby’s diaper, and test the water. Feels great. Get in, lower the baby onto me, and then, I am guilty of only slight hyperbole here, the world ended.

The baby starts howling in a way that makes me question the existence of God. What on earth could be happening here? The water is definitely not too hot, I remembered to test it by normal human standards, not my own (because if I’m not lobster red at the end of a shower there was no point at all, hygiene and socialization be damned). There’s no soap so it can’t be in his eyes, I removed the Oscar the Grouch washcloth I loved and apparently was, in the words of one reasonable friend, “straight up terrifying.” Why is he screaming?

Well, Mac had the same question. So he runs into the bathroom, practically knocking the door off its hinges to get to his child who’s being ax-murdered in the bath. He’s within inches of heroically saving his son from the unseen nightmare that’s causing this alarm when…shit. I had been steaming the bathroom for a good 20 minutes. Mac suddenly looks like I tipped him out of his bowl for fun just to watch him flop on the carpet. He looks for the inhaler we keep in the upstairs bathroom. Naturally it’s not there, because God is mad I questioned his/her existence up there in the fourth paragraph. Mac hurls himself towards the stairs, scrambling to get the inhaler he knows he has in the downstairs bathroom. Meanwhile, the blast of cold air Mac let into the room just hit the tub and…shit.

The baby is now scared, screaming and cold. He lets loose the nastiest, foulest, most watery stream of poop you can imagine. He didn’t poop, his butt was just a conduit for waste water that never made it to the “condense/solidify” stage. And I’m in the tub covered in poo-water that’s swirling in the tub and turning my warm big boy bath into a giant germy sewage dump. Mac comes halfway up the stairs, doing his Puff the Magic Dragon act on his inhaler. He takes one look through the open bathroom door, sees the look on my face and…shit.

Mac is laughing so hard he can’t keep the damn inhaler in his mouth. All I wanted was to gently Earth-Mother-soothe my sick baby into a deep, restorative slumber using steam, a little Bizet and loving caresses in a nice warm bath. Now the baby is screaming, Mac is dramatically clinging to life on the stairs wheeze-crying and I’m soaked up to my cellulite in poop water.

Next time the baby gets ground up Sudafed in his bottle and I don’t care who know it.*

This won’t really happen.**

**probably.

Elegy for an Unknown Uncle

After a few posts on infertility, drooling, TV, what have you, the next post was supposed to be funny. It really was funny, too, there’s a good bit where Baby poops on me in terror while Mac looks on helplessly as I’m surrounded by poo-water. I wish that was this entry.

The reality is, that entry would be dishonest. I have pledged nothing to you on this blog if not honesty. The honest, biting, horrible truth is that there is so little humor in the day, the week, this writing because my husband was contacted by police last Wednesday and told that his older brother had died of a drug overdose. Carl lived in Asia and the Middle East teaching ESL, but had been deported. He died in Canada after spending most of his adult life trying to leave it, and whatever was inside himself that followed him around the world.

Mac then had to call his parents. I have not heard anything quite so sad as two parents who are in shock but not surprised. This was the phone call they have thought about for 20 years. Mac and his parents are not a family of three. They will forever be four minus one. But the interest paid over and over on that one comes back in this moment as a certainty and peace they haven’t known since Carl picked up that first dose of heroin. At the end of this long and agonizing wait for Mac’s call there is, at last, security.

I cry for them. I cry for Mac. I cry for myself; Carl was my brother in law and I wanted–needed– to believe one day we could have something approaching a friendship. I’m not naive enough to expect an addict to change his stripes. My hope was that he might see me as the new one. I was the person he hadn’t lied to, stolen from, disappointed. Maybe he could talk to me. He did. Not much, but we emailed. It was something; an open line of communication when others were shut down.

I cry for my son. If there is anything I wanted FOR Carl in this year, it was to know his nephew. When I emailed pictures from the adoption I asked him how it felt to be an uncle. He told me he still hadn’t wrapped his head around his brother having a kid. Being an uncle didn’t occur to him! He had a new place. A new piece in his family. This, above all, is what I wish he might have known:

Carl

You never disappointed me

You didn’t need to be here for me to think you were cool

You had the really good dirt on daddy and I know someday I would have wanted that

I would have been able to love you and not your decision making

I wanted to hear the stories about traveling a couple of years before mom thought I was “ready”

Someday I’ll know the truth, the entire truth, about your death

And I’ll still be your family and love you.

Your nephew

The Crown Drools

I wouldn’t claim to have NO prior experience with babies– Robin and AJ are both moms, I babysat as a teen, the usual stuff you do to come into contact with babies. My experience was wide, but not deep. Mac had far less experience, insofar as he has a very small extended family and also, this is said with love, for about 15 years of his adult life he looked like a hardcore punk rock Disney villain come to life and no reasonable mother would leave so much as a rutabaga with him.

This is why we were a little surprised the first day the baby let a big stream of clear, viscous fluid stream right out of his face and onto the floor. This was unprecedented. He hadn’t been eating, it wasn’t coming out of his nose, it didn’t seem related to crying or being distressed in any way. I had heard of drool, sure– but this wasn’t a little dribble coming from one side of his lips. This had actual volume and mass.

The strangest part was that it didn’t stop. There was so, so, so much. OK, so drooling is associated with teething. That could be exciting! He might be getting a tooth! MILESTONE! We had a good root around Baby’s mouth, figured it would come in the next day or two, and Bob’s your uncle. Whoa. Watching too much British telly. TV. Anyhow…no tooth. Weird. Surely liquid in this quantity is a harbinger of something. This was varsity squad liquid expulsion from a walk-on.

By the end of the evening, we had changed his pajamas twice because they kept getting soaked. It finally dawned on me that this must be why people gave us bibs. We had assumed bibs were for eating only. Want to laugh at some new parent math? We had been given about 25 bibs. We kept the cutest 12. Why 12? Because the baby would eat three times a day and we would do laundry every three days. Don’t you see how clever we were being? We only needed nine bibs and with 12 we had THREE WHOLE EXTRAS. Oh, don’t stop laughing yet. We only kept the cleanest looking ones. Because we were going to pre-treat every stain, then put them in the laundry, and remember to take them out of the dryer right away so the bibs would always look clean and freshly pressed. Yes. We actually had these thoughts. This was also during my “I’ll never give up on cloth diapering” phase, “I’ll NEVER complain when the baby cries because we were so close to having no baby to hear crying” phase, my “the baby will never eat food I didn’t prepare myself” phase, and (the 80’s hair of embarrassing phases) “the baby will hear Spanish everyday so he still think the world sounds familiar and comforting outside the womb” phase. For the record, we did come back to that one, but I’m pretty sure it’s only because the best childcare in our area happens to be run by Mexican-Americans.

By the next morning Mac and I can’t believe the drooling didn’t abate. Hell, it got worse. Baby had the Niagara Falls coming down his dimply little chin and pooling around his neck fat. Of all the things I have Googled concerning this child, ‘how much drool is too much?” isn’t even in the top ten. But it did make the highlight reel for that day, if only because it auto-completed to “how much do Newfoundlands drool” and I didn’t realize they were talking about the dogs. I spent a fair few minutes laughing at the idea of an entire section of Canada unable to wear a nice suit or get married without a formal little bib to catch their uncontrollable streams of saliva.

So, that was 5 months ago. We now own 30 bibs. Most of them are quite ugly. They are mottled little cloth things that have shriveled up from washing and being velcro-ed to each other for days. There are two bins on our kitchen table: Clean Bibs, Disgusting Bibs. He has drooled for 5 straight months without a single tooth in sight. He happily accepts the bibbing ritual and even laughs if you lift up his neck fat to make sure you’re catching all the good stuff. It’s a good thing he’s used to them, because he leaves a visible drool path in his wake we have dubbed the Snail Trail. He has even drooled directly into my mouth and at this point I hardly notice. Well, I DO notice, but it doesn’t freak me out. Much.

If you were wondering what to call a baby who drools this DAMN much, here is a handy list of nicknames for you to try. I can’t claim all of these, our brilliant friends have chimed in on the act. Use them in good health.

  • Droolia Childs, Drools Verne, Droolie Andrews, Raul Droolia, Droolia Roberts, August Strindberg’s Miss Droolie, Drool of the Nile, The Crown Drools, LL Drool J, Ja Drool, Count Droolcula, and Mark Spits.

The Mover and Shaker

A snapshot into the Borden household:

I’m in the kitchen, putting together something to eat. It doesn’t matter what it was, as long as it went in our mouths and stayed down it was utterly unremarkable that first 6 months of parenting.

I’m in the kitchen, and I hear Mac saying in a very low, serious voice “They say you should never, EVER shake a baby.” I stick my head around the corner, at least mildly curious as to what’s going to follow. This is when Mac continues:

“…but they didn’t say anything about….shimmying! Shimmy shimmy shimmy. Shimmy shimmy shimmy.”

He’s gently shimmying Baby around, letting the rolls of fat sway effortlessly in the breeze as the baby laughs hysterically, making the world’s chubbiest jazz hands with his little sausage fingers.

Our child will grow up in the theatre. He’ll start attending rehearsals as soon as he’s old enough to toddle onto the stage. His first stage combat lesson will be the day he can grip a rubber knife. He’ll know your monologue needs to be strong if you can’t sing, and if you can sing then you need to bring shoes for the dance call. He’s going to hear his parents debate the merits of trying to re-create Sophocles’ Oedipus and he’ll know all the words to The Book of Mormon as well as The Importance of Being Earnest. He doesn’t even know what the world of theatre is yet, meanwhile I break into a cold sweat imagining his first foray into our world. I’m terrified of his first audition, what if like me he’s a total mess (I sang “Frosty the Snowman” and cried the whole time. I was six)? Or worse he gets a lead role and becomes a superstar with an ego to match? WORST– what if, what if, well, dear god…

What if he’s utterly uninterested in the stage? Not being an actor, he should run away if at all possible. I refer to the entire enterprise. What if he thinks everything we do is just pointless? That film and TV are already dinosaurs, if it’s not a four second Vine it’s already too wordy and irrelevant? Can two parents and their burning passion for an ancient art form be enough to convince a kid there is life outside of an X-box? Conversely, could we turn him away from it simply because we’re part of it and he’d rather be anyplace we’re not?

The funny thing is, I understand that it ultimately won’t define who we are as a family. We’ll love a soccer player, a scientist, an engineer, a nurse, a diplomat, an oboist. In time we could even love a conservative politician although we believe his dual Canadian citizenship is a prophylaxis against such an outcome. I never doubt we’ll be proud of him.  Perhaps my larger fear is “In a world where screens are the primary form of communication and entertainment, will he be proud of us?”

For now, I’m going to shimmy him as long as he will allow. As anyone from our tribe will tell you, it’s never too early to start thinking about the dance call. Shimmy shimmy shimmy.

SAVOR.

People give lots of advice when you have a new baby. Some of it is helpful (“Buy 30,000 more diapers than you think you need!”). Some of it is messy but true (if he has diaper rash, let him be naked for awhile everyday!”). Some of it is kind of bizarre (squirt breast milk into infected eyes!).

The most universal piece of advice we got, no contest, was to “savor every moment!” Actually, they verbally capitalize it: Savor Every Moment. The people who say this were A) very well meaning B) usually a touch misty eyed and C) clinically insane.

Trying to savor every minute seems like something that should be so easy to do with a precious, gorgeous little boy that makes funny cooing noises and giggles after he sneezes. And for sure, savoring opportunities abound: bathtime, tummy time, watching him sleep, playing with his hair. An astute person will notice this is not, however, 24 hours worth of activity in a day. Lucky for me, “Savor It!” probably became the concept that saved my marriage.

For awhile it was a minor “in” joke. If I got peed on, Mac would say “savor it!” If he had to fork over $100 for formula and diapers we’d chuckle “let’s savor this!” The day Baby kicked Mac square in the balls was a more ironic “savor.” Then came the time when the “we are truly savoring this” almost got overwhelmed by the reality.

What happened that evening when we were not bathing, tummy timing or hair playing? Let’s see. I was recovering from the injections that help with my chronic abdominal pain, walking with a cane, plus scared out of my wits that one of the nerves in my abdomen would fire back to life while I was holding Baby, and that I would hurt myself trying not to drop him (or worse, drop him then fall). Mac was working 50 hours a week, allowing for his own chronic pain and desperately waiting for sinus surgery to remove a cyst that impaired his breathing and left him even more sleepless than he should have been. We were, to use the parlance of our own choosing, having a pain day. B.C. (Before Child) we could sleep, or make an extra physical therapy appointment, hell; we could drink for a couple of hours and see how that went. The point is, with Baby there was no longer such a thing as a pain day opt-out.

So we’re in the living room/kitchen. My abdomen is very swollen and sore, Mac’s head is killing him, and suddenly the baby begins the Wail of Everlasting Horror. Oh my God, I had no idea the entirety of human suffering throughout time and space could be compressed into one child’s voicebox. And NOTHING helped. Initial inspection yielded no results. We run the laundry list of the usual suspects: diaper, food, temperature, gas, lonely….nope. We talk through other possibilities as they occur to us: When do babies start teething? How can you tell if he’s constipated? I once heard the penis can get chaffed by the diaper?

Now the screaming has started to interfere with our neurological function and we’re screaming back and forth these amazingly bad theories, ranging from the esoteric to downright insane. “Can we let him scream into a phone and see if someone else knows what this means?” “What if he needs to hear his biological mother’s heartbeat and my heartbeat sounds weird?” “Can babies have gallstones?” What? “I SAID CAN BABIES HAVE GALLSTONES?”

In utter desperation I decide to start making dinner, so I can face this hellchild with a full stomach and possibly a Percocet or two in me. I turn on the oven, thinking about chicken pot pies. Decide to make formula so Mac can try feeding baby again while I do the pies. Vaguely recall there was a potpie incident a few weeks ago…what was that?

Need nipple for bottle. Wash, dry, assemble nipple. Set it down to search for the bottle I thought I started making. Oven starts smoking. Oh, crap. The potpie incident was that I dropped one and neverfullycleaneditupAHHHHHHHH! Run to kitchen, slam off oven, open kitchen door to clear smoke, run back with bottle, SHIT, where’s the nipple? Cat bolts out open door to escape the infernal screeching. Run to get the cat! CAN’T run to get the cat, don’t have shoes! Forget the shoes, now the fire alarm is going off. NOW I hear the baby screaming, the alarm wailing, Mac cursing, the cat’s in Omaha by now…

I turn around and look right at my husband, who, over the head of his beautiful bellowing newborn, laughs. Really, really laughs, as he says to me “are you savoring this?”

Yeah.

I think I am.

The Color of Love

When Mac and I started this adventure we knew that there were things we needed to have a very long, serious, introspective conversation about. Adoption forms ask you explicit questions about your potential matches for kids. Many of my friends assured me that there is a roll of the dice with biological children, and of course they are right. We are fortunate to have friends who have shown us families can grow stronger embracing children born with unexpected challenges. In the last few years we have welcomed children with eating challenges, intellectual disabilities, epilepsy, diabetes, heart defects. In a flash those terms are replaced with names. They are Paul, or Sabrina, or Elise. They’re loved little humans, not squares you check on a form.

However, bio parents roll the dice with a certain set of givens already in place. Adoption forms ask probing, intrusive questions that you MUST answer honestly. Agencies want to know what you think of “conception circumstances.” I am going to sit here, in my living room, and decide if I could raise a baby that was the product of what one depraved criminal did to a survivor who is somehow carrying her rapist’s baby to term. The questions only get harder from there. Disability? Degree of disability? Will you risk adopting children of unknown paternity? If you gamble, and he shows up, the baby may be taken from you. In the end though, the most complex set of questions were about race.

I know several adoptive families that had difficult discussions about race. In the end, most found they couldn’t see raising a child that looked different from themselves. One of the moms explained to me that she was concerned that when she touched the hair of a black child it wouldn’t feel right. It may be easy to dismiss that as not being open minded. But if, like me, you’re white, I want you to go on this journey with me. See what these questions are. Walk yourself in our shoes.

First of all, ask yourself, really ask yourself, would you feel comfortable knowing every single person that sees your family wonders if your child is adopted? Would you be comfortable with strangers coming and asking (and boy, do they) “where did you get your child?” The correct answer, by the way, is “Iowa!” People never have the guts to ask if we’re joking. It’s pretty great.

Take the question one step farther: could you learn how to braid tightly curled or coiled hair? Could you deal with lactose intolerance, sickle cell anemia and other medical issues found more commonly in the non-white population? Would you feel embarrassed or offended if a teacher assumes you aren’t a mom and bypasses you to go straight to the Chinese family that looks like they must be your daughter’s parents? Do you think about terms like your child being a coconut? An Oreo? A banana? If you don’t even know what I mean here, then you have a serious ways to catch up. These are derogatory terms, usually aimed at kids, to say that the color they are on the outside isn’t who they really are. My son isn’t really Mexican; he’s a coconut. Brown on the outside, white on the inside. A black person may be an Oreo, an Asian person a banana. And we have yet to touch on the special hell reserved for people who are multiracial. It should be so cool: twice the membership, twice the acceptance. It almost never seems to work out that way. These kids may be seen as not enough of one, or too much of the other.

Our neighbors, let’s call them Seal and Heidi, witnessed this. Heidi, as a white woman, never knew the extent of racism in American today until she saw how her black husband and biracial child can be treated. She told me (and I will never forget this) that she realized she was a different person when someone called her beautiful daughter a nigger and Heidi’s first thought was “I’m going to that person’s house. I’m going there to kill them. This is the day I go to jail.” Incidentally, I didn’t do “the N word” or n—– because they didn’t call her daughter “the N word.” They called her daughter a nigger. I refuse to minimize what was said. It didn’t get sugarcoated for her, and now it shouldn’t be sugarcoated for the people who need to think about what it would mean for this to happen to your daughter. Remember, you’re walking in our shoes right now.

Mac and I looked inside ourselves. We thought about color, ethnicity, belonging, our comfort, the child’s comfort, our families, our friends. We were fairly lucky. A few people disappointed us by focusing on many negatives (a black child would have a higher chance of being born an addict was something we heard several places). We educated others on the fact that medical condition is separated from skin color. We could agree to have a black child and still decide we could not accept a child born on drugs. As it turned out, we did say we were willing to look at a variety of medical complications on a step by step basis if our insurance covered it. But we don’t have great coverage. The hard truth was, we couldn’t afford to take home a very ill child no matter what. It felt heartless and horrible to imagine somewhere out there a beautiful child I may love forever wouldn’t be mine because I said “no” to a certain condition. In all honestly, I was a mess thinking about how much I’d be willing to hurt myself if it meant getting a child. Thank god it was my therapist who sorted me out. She pointed out that as someone with minor mobility issues myself (I have a chronic pain condition and sometimes walk with a cane) I may not be able to adopt a child with a disability if it would make my own health worse trying to care for the child. I didn’t want to feel selfish, or close-minded. What if I missed out on the one meant for me? She asked, very gently, “what if that child misses out on a strong, healthy mom that can’t WAIT to teach a kid how to recover after each surgery and get bigger and stronger? What if they have the money, the means, even other kids to help? Don’t those families go looking for their own “right kid for us?”

But the one, deep-deep-DEEP down fear I had was simple. I am a white woman born in Nebraska. In NYC I got made fun of for being the only white woman in my security division at [STORE REDACTED BUT THEY ARE VERY FAMOUS AND HUGE AND I CAUGHT VERY CREEPY SHOPLIFTERS.] What the hell would I know about raising a Latino or black boy in America? Any other race, or a girl, I felt I could do it. But raising a brown or black man in America? An America where black men have The Talk with black boys about the things you do to survive in a culture where you are constantly a minority, even if you are in the majority. The America where Arizona would require my son to have his birth certificate on him all the time because he looks illegal. What do I do when he asks me about clothes he wants to wear like the other kids and I admit that to me it looks too foreign? How could I tell my son I’m afraid people will assume he’s in a gang? Would he talk one way around me and then become someone I couldn’t even understand as a teenager with his friends? His black or Mexican friends? Would I finally be forced to accept that there is a whole side to race in America that I haven’t thought about because I have never had to? Questions my biological children would never have known. My white nephew Dude plays with toy guns 26 hours a day. What’s the line where a black boy can play with fake guns and it’s cute then it spills over into scary? Would I let a black son become an expert in stage combat like his adoptive father? Sounds great. Until I wonder how it looks if there’s a black guy running around with a training pistol. Here in our relatively small Midwestern enclave these things are probably no big deal. If we move I don’t know how big of a deal they are. Who gives him The Talk? What other Talks exist out there for non-white Americans I don’t know about because I never had to know?

It took days before I decided to answer the most important question: would I love him? Yes, I would. Would I be willing to go outside my comfort zone to learn about a culture where I am an outsider? Yes, if it meant my son felt less on the outside.

I have lots to learn and many fears to face and I need help. I have to talk to people that will help me understand my son’s reality as an American will be different than mine. Most crucially though, I know for sure I can do it. After an extensive soul search I know from the bottom of my soul:

The first time I hear someone call my beautiful son a wetback…that will be the day I’m going to jail.

Destiny’s Niño

I want to share with you a small fact about destiny that I bet you didn’t know: it has been fated since the beginning of all time that I would have a Mexican child. There was no getting around it. If you think I can make up this fate, keep reading. 

There is an old wives’ tale that newborn babies smell like something really special. It’s not the shampoo, or lotion, or anything you use around the baby, it’s just the way the baby himself smells. One night while I was lying next to the baby I took a good long sniff of his hair. It was very strange to me to discover that the old wives’ tale brought out three distinct phases of terror in me. The terror was that fate is real. The Greeks were right. You cannot outrun your destiny, not ever.

Phase One: It was TRUE. What other pieces of wisdom have I foolishly dismissed over the years just because I didn’t see empirical evidence to back the claim? Why was I dismissing the information that may not have been based in science as I understand it but had historical and cultural implications? Oh god. Was I not a feminist because I demanded a hypothesis of behavior rooted in the physical or social sciences and that avenue clearly wasn’t open to women when this wisdom began and oh my lord have I abandoned everything it means to be a woman in a misguided attempt to be a jaded humanist???

SLAP.

Wow, your imagination can run away with you when you’re tired and emotional. I didn’t shit all over the sisterhood, I just didn’t believe babies have a unique smell. Now I do. But that brings me to the second issue:

He smelled, I am not making this up, like crunchy and butter cinnamon-y goodness to me. My first thought was “toast!” I probably thought that because, and my thoughts on this are well documented, I really, really love toast. I think toast is fantastic. Plus that would even make sense, because my mom used to make me special cinnamon toast when I was a kid, I associate it with mothering and love, and blah blah blah. But the baby didn’t smell exactly like toast to me. He smelled like _________. Oh, man. OK. I’ll try again. He smelled like a, uh, uh, a…. ________________.

He smelled exactly like a —————. This is terrible. I can’t do it. Please don’t make me do it. Uh, OK. Bravery. Peace. Inner calm. What would Leslie Knope do? Boldness. Honesty. Integrity. Just say it.

He smelled precisely and utterly like a churro to me.

This was a nightmare. Did it make me racist? Am I insane? Have I somehow transposed memories of a time when I was in Mexico to having this Mexican child and then it all got swirled in my brain? Have I had a stroke? Am I dying? Nope. There’s no way of getting around it. That kid smelled like churros. He did. I was the only one that could smell it but I stand by my madness.

Which brings me to the third point, the hilarity of my fate. Before I met Mac, I dated a man from Mexico. We met there and had only seen each other in person in Mexico although we had a long distance romance for awhile. He was the major relationship I had in my early 30s. I’ll call him Juan, because if I tell you his real name everyone in all of Mexico will be able to find him. His parents had a hippie streak and gave him a name that would be as distinctive in Mexico as Moon Unit Zappa or Blue Ivy Carter is here. Juan is a great guy, it’s just that he needed to live in Mexico where his heart is, and I needed to live in the US, where my heart is.  Sorry, I don’t like to lie. Ireland is where my heart is. However the fact remains that my job, family and psychiatrist all live here and that, especially the last, is not insignificant. Juan had a house in Mexico but living there wasn’t right for me. So we parted and it hurt but we moved on and remain friends.

The hilarity is this: I ate churros quite a few times with Juan. They are damn delicious and go great with hot cocoa. Maybe I did make a subconscious connection. Maybe I do like cinnamon. Maybe I have a serious smelling disorder linked to motherhood and I should ask my psychiatrist about it. One glaring, ridiculous fat fact remains:

I broke up with a Mexican man, to live in the US. In the US I married a Canadian. The Canadian and I have a Mexican son.

You can’t fuck with fate, people. I was gonna have a Mexican kid no matter what.  And he DID smell like churros. So there.

 

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