Friday, January 16, 2009

There Went the Nesting Instinct

image I have become a madwoman. This is really crazy. Okay, several of you are older than me. No one has sat down with me: I need someone to carefully talk me through what is going to happen in the next five or so years. Hormonally. Woman-wise. Insane-wise. Whatever.

I am thirty-five, and I am going NUTS.

On Monday, I was tearing my hair out to have a baby. I was nesting like you wouldn't believe. My whole existence was preparing for this baby. Every single thing I did, from cleaning off the kitchen counter to teaching a student, was about preparing for a baby.

Tuesday, I actually wondered if my husband would notice the difference between 9 and 10 months, if I went down to a bar and persuaded a guy to have unprotected sex with me so I would get pregnant. (Okay, I would NOT do this. But it flitted through my head.)

image Today, Thursday, I am SO restless, if I had the money, I would start packing RIGHT now and move. Just leave. In fact, we are lucky it's so cold, because otherwise, I'd pack up the tent, put the cats in the Jeep, and live like a hippie for a year.

You think I'm kidding.

Sadly, I do not find the baby and the get-the-hell-out-of-Dodge thing to be mutually exclusive. Maybe that's my version of nesting, as I want to have my family and my home on the road.

Or maybe I am just going mad.

I don't know.

Why does everything ALWAYS have to boil down to:

God, that whip. Always at my heels.

Is this a mid-life crisis? Because if it is, are you KIDDING ME? Men buy a stupid little red CAR and it makes them feel ALL BETTER?


44 bonus scribbles:

Stephen Parrish 1/16/2009 02:56:00 AM  

My wife was 36 and I was 37 when we decided to have our first (and only) child. The timing was perfect for us.

If I had become a father when I was (say) in my early twenties, I wouldn't have done as good a job. I wouldn't have made the time for my kid, I wouldn't have bothered matching stockings with skirts, I wouldn't have been caught dead playing Barbies.

There's a time for everything. We all hear different drummers. You'll know what to do.

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 03:02:00 AM  

Stephen, I would have been completely unable to parent in my twenties. I was sick. I feel I would be ready now. I feel ready now. I already love it now, which is odd, because he/she/they don't exist yet.

I think I have this very clear idea, all of a sudden, of exactly what I want my life to be. And now I don't want to wait, but the necessary waiting and the necessary saving of money is making me CRAZY. I feel like I'm putting my energy backwards, in the wrong direction, so that I have some room to move forward.

What is this, a therapy session? Sheesh. Just send the bill. LOL!

Aimless Writer 1/16/2009 06:23:00 AM  

Sounds like cabin fever? How's the weather out there?
I'm always restless. I love change and moving. I think creative people are like this. Constantly wanting to improve and change. Change anything; life, home, even rearranging furniture! Big scale or small scale.
I was in my 20's when the baby urge hit. Sometimes I think I was too young and sometimes I'm glad I was so young because now their in their 20's and I have more free time. :)
I think the time is right when the time is right. Different for everyone. Go with your gut.

Melanie Avila 1/16/2009 08:59:00 AM  

Now I feel guilty for ending our conversation last night so I could finish writing (yeah, I said FINISH). I think it's a combination of cabin fever and feeling your age. I don't mean that in a bad way, but like you said, you're very aware of your body so it only makes sense that it's dominating your thoughts. Try to hang in there until the weather is warm enough that you won't die of hypothermia.

Pink Ink 1/16/2009 09:25:00 AM  

I wish it WERE as simple as driving a sports car off a lot!

*MUST WRITE FASTER* I know the feeling, pal :-)

Karen Olson 1/16/2009 09:39:00 AM  

A tattoo is a mid life crisis. A baby is not. Your biological clock is screaming at you.

Write something pertaining to this. It might calm you down. I have a novella I wrote when I was going through infertility stuff about a woman going through infertility stuff. It was incredibly therapeutic.

Sarah Laurenson 1/16/2009 10:06:00 AM  

Ah hormones. They are a major pain in the butt.

Mine first kicked in when I was 31 or so. I wanted to have sex with anybody and everybody. Very indiscriminate, those hormones. Well, I didn't go rampaging through the bars, but it was crazy making for a little bit.

Then the baby ones hit around 36 or so. And that was a different kind of crazy. 'I want it now' is a good way to put it.

Now? At 47, things are winding down. And not always in a good way. I go through times of being hot all the time complete with night sweats and other times of being cold a lot, but sometimes still with night sweats. Waking up with a river coursing down your chest is no fun. And the sex drive comes and goes in a bizarre fleeting fashion. Crazy making this time are the extreme mood swings.

A red car? I'd love it if that would fix this. LOL

Charles Gramlich 1/16/2009 10:48:00 AM  

Well, I bought a motorcycle and it worked for me. I wish you luck with the madness.

Susan Helene Gottfried 1/16/2009 10:52:00 AM  

Dudette, it's below zero. We're trapped inside unless we want a new nose, one without frostbite. Of COURSE you're feeling cabin fever and the need to run.

Plus, thoughts of kids -- that signals you're ready for change. The problem is, you want change NOW, you're ready for change NOW -- but there's no change to be had.

You are blessedly normal.

And I only live an hour away. You always have a temporary escape.

Erica Orloff 1/16/2009 10:58:00 AM  

Well, Spy . . .

I have four kids and when I see a baby I want another. And another. I mean, I enjoy motherhood, but for me there's something very instinctual to it as well.

When you have a baby, I will babysit. :-)

Robin 1/16/2009 10:58:00 AM  

I agree that you're blessedly normal! What's normal for someone at 25 is normal for someone else at 35, but usually we've all felt what you're feeling at one time or another. Take good care and know that when things are meant to be, they will be. You've got such a great outlook on life that I know the future will be everything you want it to be!

And boy do I wish I wrote faster too!

Kath Calarco 1/16/2009 11:37:00 AM  

Advice From An Older Broad: There are certainties in life: death and taxes, as well as endless things in life: herpes and kids.

We can't control dying, and most of us can't get out of paying taxes unless we're a religious organization or live on a reservation. But, herpes and having kids are the two things we can control (hopefully) - both are forever.

If you're seriously considering motherhood, think long and hard. Kids give both joy and sorrow, and no matter how old your child, you'll never, ever stop worrying about them.

LaDonna 1/16/2009 12:09:00 PM  

Spy, you're not going crazy! Look at it as a turning point in your life. I truly feel, for the most part, we're exactly where we're suppose to be or at least close to the path. The baby dreams are part of that. I actually saw a baby at my grandchildren's school assembly and wanted to hold it so bad I had to wrestle with the idea. I had flashbacks of mine at that age, and dreams of holding my great grandchildren one day in mere seconds. It's life.

So be good to yourself. All the good stuff will come to you. I used to be frustated at the "waiting" points in my life too. And I realized that the Universe was just busy lining things up for me!

Janna Qualman 1/16/2009 01:08:00 PM  

Goodness, girlie! It sounds like you're most certainly ready. :)

Edie 1/16/2009 01:37:00 PM  

Spy, it's probably cabin fever, like everyone else said. But even when you have a child that you love with all your heart, there will be times when you want to lock yourself in a room -- because it's the only place you can be alone -- and scream. Or pack everything up and drive away. In a red convertible. But most of us eat chocolate and stick it out.

kathulhu 1/16/2009 04:40:00 PM  

I get those same feelings like 10 times a day. I wish I knew how to control them! When I find out, I'll let you know :)

I don't think that telling your niece that she is pretty is a bad thing. But I think that parents who reinforce that beauty is the ONLY positive quality in a girl is bad. It's a really fine line and it's one of the reasons that I'm glad I have boys. Although boys might have the same self esteem issues. I'm not sure. Yet.

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 04:50:00 PM  

Aimless, the weather is COLD. Subzero. So, yeah, I think you may be on to something!

I think you are also on to something with the change and creative type thing. Definitely!

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 04:51:00 PM  

No worries, Melanie! I felt much better talking to you! I think I actually wrote this post before we talked.

You finished! YAY! That's awesome!

And yeah, I am SO ready for some sun!

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 04:51:00 PM  

Jewel, that mantra hounds me!

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 04:52:00 PM  

Karen, I have two novellas I need to finish yesterday, but I decided number 3 would be about this!

It's a great idea!

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 04:55:00 PM  

Sarah, you know, it's completely unfair. Women have it pretty bad, as far as all that is concerned. I've got the sex drive and the baby drive all at once. Which is extra madness since DH is IN THE MIDDLE OF THE OCEAN FOR FOUR MONTHS!

I feel crazy. I do. I feel like I need to rip off my skin. I don't know. This is madness. Lord, have mercy, please.

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 04:55:00 PM  

Charles, I'm going for an RV. :-)

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 04:56:00 PM  

Oh, Susan, it's good to know I'm normal. I must get out of the house. Workout time and movie time. Maybe that will help. I hate to spend the money, but... I'm going crazy!

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 04:58:00 PM  

Aw, Erica! Yes, I am going mad, because when you said, "When you have a baby," I promptly burst into tears.

It is officially crazy that I have this urge to stay at home and talk to my uterus about having a baby in April, rather than go out and see a movie. Right?

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 05:00:00 PM  

Awww, thanks, Robin! I'm feeling pretty hormonal crazy right now, so it's nice to hear you think I have a great outlook on life.

I must write faster, get that life going soonest!

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 05:05:00 PM  

Kath, I'll take the kids, not the herpes, LOL! My mother wishes she never had kids. She really doesn't want me to have kids. (She had one die, and the other had difficulty. I was adopted, long story.) She thinks they only bring heartbreak, which is really sad.

I only wish I'd had a horde of them sooner!

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 05:07:00 PM  

I LOVE that so much, LaDonna, that I wrote it down when you said it. The universe is busy lining things up for me. Oh, gosh, I LOVE THAT!

I've been bursting into tears every time I see a baby for about two years now. It was just December that I decided: I'm doing this!

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 05:07:00 PM  

Or crazy, Janna. :-) LOL!

Ello 1/16/2009 05:07:00 PM  

This is very normal. I have had these same exact feelings. Actually the bad thing is I have that pack up and move away from my family feeling quite often - and I love my kids!!

I think it is just such a normal reaction to have and I also think it is hard for you because your husband is away. It all plays into it.

Feel better soon.

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 05:08:00 PM  

Lovely, Edie! Hormonal craziness for the rest of my life! Oh no! We hope to live on the road full-time, in an RV. Crazy, but I like that I can constantly pull up my house and drag it to a new place. :-)

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 05:10:00 PM  

Kath, I would die, right about now, to know how to control them!

Thanks. I worry about her. Sort of. She's pretty strong, which is a good thing. It just makes me sort of sad that her self-identity is SO wrapped up in her looks.

spyscribbler 1/16/2009 05:11:00 PM  

Really, Ello? Yeah. I haven't been able to talk to the hubster for a week now. I miss him like crazy, am looking at the prospect of no fun wiht him for three months, and my hormones are raging and my body wants to make a baby now. Yes, this is all a recipe for craziness!

Robin 1/16/2009 05:27:00 PM  

Sounds normal to me. My advice - get a bunch of shoes, and then have a lot of sex when Glenn gets back. If you pack up, move to PA!

You have a groovy award on my blog. Feel free to get your loot.

L.C. Gant 1/16/2009 10:15:00 PM  

I agree wholeheartedly with everyone's comments. You're totally normal. In fact, I have friends in their mid-20's whose biological alarm clocks are ringing like crazy. And most of them aren't even dating yet!

I also can't stress the timing thing enough. I'm convinced that everything in the universe happens exactly when it's supposed to. My husband and I got pregnant completely by accident right after I graduated from college. If it had been 6 months earlier, I would've had finals and morning sickness at the same time; 6 months later and I would've already applied to law school. It happened at the perfect moment.

Your time is coming, and when it does, I think you'll look back and be glad for the wait. The things we appreciate most in life are the things we've had to wait for.

StarvingWriteNow 1/17/2009 07:55:00 AM  

Okay, time for some therapy:

Breathe in.
Breathe out.
You're perfectly fine, just going through a hormonal nuttiness phase.
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
You will NOT take your shovel and swing madly at passers-by.
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
Tell your writer's voice to stop nagging you.
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
Things will work out.
Breathe in.
Breathe out.

PS: the next time we have some sun, bundle up, go outside and just stand in it for 15 minutes. Get your vitamin D for the day. You'll feel better. Promise.

Zoe Winters 1/17/2009 09:07:00 AM  

As someone with a hormonal imbalance, yes, this sounds very hormonal.

Though my hormones have never "acted out" with baby fever. I hope to god I never get baby fever. Because, not that there is anything wrong with kids or babies but it would mean that my actual wishes and desires were subsumed entirely by some evolutionary biological urge. And that makes me feel like the aliens have landed and done something funky to my brain.

I do not want that to happen to me.

Did you want a baby when you were 29, like at all? Like in some mythical future place and time? Please say you did. I don't want to want a baby when I'm 35. I want to get over the fertile years completely without losing my mind and getting baby fever.

Not that you've lost your mind. Not saying that. And I'm sorry this has turned from your issue to my fear/paranoia that that will happen to me. I just hear baby fever stories and it puts me into panic mode. I do not want to be an incubator for life. The idea just creeps me out personally.

spyscribbler 1/17/2009 01:20:00 PM  

LOL, thanks, Robin! I never had the shoe urge, but I did inherit the chocolate urge!


spyscribbler 1/17/2009 01:22:00 PM  

L.C., that's the truth. The timing issue is good, too! I keep telling myself that it will happen at just the right time. And then I tell myself precisely when the right time is, LOL!

spyscribbler 1/17/2009 01:23:00 PM  

Writenow, THANK yoU! Totally breathing over here. :-) I need to bundle myself out to Borders, but I feel so cozy in my warm house. Off I go!

spyscribbler 1/17/2009 01:32:00 PM  

Zoe, I wanted kids growing up. I wanted to homeschool them. From my earliest memory, I knew this is what I wanted.

I was adopted, so I've never felt like I had a "real" family. I wanted a real family with all my heart, more than anything.

When I was 22 - 29ish, I was mostly in bed, sick, not able to take care of myself, pretty much. So... no. I didn't want a baby then. I just wanted to survive.

At about 30, I heard the first whisperings, but again, I wasn't confident I was well yet. I could not take care of myself when I was sick, so I just was not ready to take on another human being.

As I stayed better, I thought of it more. At about 33, I started bawling every time I passed Babies R Us.

But at about 32, I decided I wanted to live on the road permanently in an RV. So... I didn't think those two worlds matched.

Then, about a year ago, I discovered "roadschooling" and other families who live the full-time lifestyle with kids. This made me think I could do it.

So... now I feel it's time, and now I'm 35, and I feel it's the perfect time.

All that to say, I know people who lived through their twenties and believed they couldn't have or didn't want kids. They've gone through periods where they did end up trying, but... mostly they knew. And they were right.

So I think you always sort of know.

Anonymous,  1/17/2009 09:45:00 PM  

Heh! We should talk...preferably off the blogsphere. ;-) Boy, do I have a story for you.

And as for it being hormonal, it probably is. But the word "hormonal" isn't necessarily a bad thing. It think it's gotten a bad rep because it's usually tied to bitchiness. Based on your blog, I just don't see it, hon.

Anonymous,  1/17/2009 09:45:00 PM  

Heh! We should talk...preferably off the blogsphere. ;-) Boy, do I have a story for you.

And as for it being hormonal, it probably is. But the word "hormonal" isn't necessarily a bad thing. It think it's gotten a bad rep because it's usually tied to bitchiness. Based on your blog, I just don't see it, hon.

Lauren 1/19/2009 10:50:00 AM  

I have several friends going through the same thing (and a husband that is starting to...eek). It's really not just a female thing. And I don't think that it is fully hormonal. You just know what you want and that you feel ready for it. I think that your comment where you say that you have a clear idea of what you want your life to be is why you feel this way. I'm sure that it will all work out okay

Best of luck to you. And good luck with the rest of winter. I think that everyone is going to get a little bit of cabin fever. This winter is crazy bad.

Zoe Winters 1/24/2009 01:01:00 PM  

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Spy! This makes me feel SOOOOO much better!