I Find Myself Very Convincing

I want to have children, just not now.

I like my life. I like its mix of spontaneity and plans. I like eating out and sleeping in. I like having dinner with my wife and walking to dessert and then just bumming around for a bit. I like seeing movies and exploring new places. I like traveling. And I do like the idea of having a child and experiencing all of these things together… I just don’t like it now. (read more…)

The Years That Ask

I find myself disappointed when I learn that a woman I admire has kids. Like when I read Heidi Julavits’ memoir, “A Folded Clock,” I was excited when she describes an abortion. “Maybe she doesn’t have kids!” came a gleeful shout from somewhere inside me. She does, I discovered a few chapters later, and my heart sank a bit. Listening to an episode of Krista Tippett’s podcast, On Being, I had the same experience. “I wonder if she has kids?” She’s so wise and successful. I Googled for the answer. She does (two). Cue disappointment.

(read more…)

What Being a Very New Mother Feels Like

It feels like when I’m happy — even gleeful — to be apart, some little interior elf is also uneasily missing her. When I return to find her safe and happy, I’m momentarily thrilled before becoming frustrated at the unrelenting grind of her care.

It feels like trying to describe your “interesting” dream to someone. (read more…)

The Mother of All Questions

Hi! It’s been a minute.

This is just a quick post to say that we’re coming back, for a limited time, with a mini-season around a central theme: parenthood and children.

Why this theme? Two reasons. (read more…)

Marriage—Who Needs It? I Do.

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In the early years of our relationship, when Lars and I were just out of college, we attended two weddings of our peers. The couples were pretty different from us—dating since their teens, religious—and we experienced the occasions like anthropologists observing exotic customs.

Then our mid-twenties arrived and, with them, a torrent of weddings. One after the other, our close friends all started getting married. These occasions allowed us to leave our ordinary lives behind for a weekend, drive to some inn or farm, don fancy clothes, and watch our peers act older and wiser than we felt.

Once Lars and I returned the rental car Sunday night, we’d be back to our cruddy apartment in Queens. Come Monday, I’d be sorting more newsclips for a boss who found me talentless and disappointing. The future did not seem fecund with promise; it felt unknowable and scary. On more than one occasion Lars had found me in our bathtub, sobbing into the water, telling him I’d peaked and was now a waste of space. While I believed in our relationship, I could not imagine declaring to the world my confidence in life ahead. Love was real, and we had plenty of laughs and joys together, but despair conquered all. (read more…)