One... odd bonus to having kinds young is that when they are grown up and gone, you're still young enough to do something non-parental with your life. Almost start over, although I don't think Christine and I will really be "starting over" so much in 2008. Yes, in 2008, CR will be 18. In about four and a half years. I'm not sure how that will end, because I have never done this before, but already there's pangs of losing CR to the real world. But when he moves out, I'll only be 39. When my dad was 39, I was only 7. Christine will be a few years younger, like my mom was. I picture our lives, with a soundtrack that is a sped up 33rpm orchestra tune on 78 speed (ask your parents, young ones, what that means), like a Benny Hill sketch, with us zooming down the lane in a car, weaving about and going "Wheeeee!" Okay, maybe that's being dramatic.
Already, CR has realized how much younger we are than his friend's parents, who are all in their late 30s and 40s. When I graduated high school, we all were kids of the Reagan era, wallowing in the Iran-contra scandal, while his friend's parents left the prom wondering what a peanut farmer from Georgia was doing as president, being attacked by rabbits. My high school prom most likely played the Bangles' "Walk like an Egyptian," theirs probably played Billy Joel's "Just the Way you Are." You get the idea. It's like we don't have anything in common with parents around here, unless they just started having their kids.
It has been a bit isolated. I have no parents or siblings, and Christine doesn't have parents, and all her siblings are much, much older than she is. Like the youngest is ten years older. Her nieces, nephews, and cousins are mostly about her age, and those that have kids live far away. In fandom, we have a few parents that we know that have had kids, like the Greyhawk clan, Sean and Lou's kids, and more recently, Brian and Lori. None of them ever ask us to babysit. I wonder if we scare them off.
I can't speak for Christine, but personally, I would have liked to have had something like a kibbutz for Christopher. Christine had that; she had cousins and nieces to play with, and CR has... no one. He also went to a magnet school most of grammar school, which was filled with kids who lived too far away to play together. He did make one lasting friend, a great kid named Dominic, but his parents always have him doing stuff, and it's hard to get Dominic to come over: his schedule is always so full. I can relate. My best friend growing up lived in Texas, for God's sake. I didn't have a pod of local friends until I was 15.
If I had money when we started out, I would have liked to have had more kids. I have kind of wanted three of them, which is kind of funny, because I used to not want any kids; I was scared to death of children. Now I wish I had more. One thing Christine said was that CR won't have brothers or sisters to share the burden when we get old. But now we're too old to "start over." We have discussed fostering when CR moves out, but that's so filled with heartache, and I am a wuss when it comes to that sort of stuff. Being an abused kid, I'd just want to slap the hell out of this kid's biological parents, you know?
So who knows what the future brings? One topic we also discussed is, "Do we still want this house?" It's a big house for just two people. My weak argument is we have a lot of stuff, but maybe I should get rid of a lot of this stuff. It's a good question. How empty will this nest feel? I take CR for granted a lot. He's a really a great person, and he has a lot to offer the world, so I can't keep him here because that's not fair to anyone.
As you can see by the time stamp, this thought keeps me awake.
This entry was originally posted at http://www.punkwalrus.com/blog/archives/00000327.html