For those of you who read my blog regularly, you know that there has been a mini baby boom in my family of late. My brother had a daughter six months ago, my sister popped out a sprog of her own over Christmas. Her best friend is due around my birthday and several of my brother's best friends have also given birth in the past few months. It's like Baby Central around here.
Now, don't get me wrong - I love my niece and nephews and I'm definitely glad they've been added into our family. It's been great fun watching them grow and seeing their personalities develop, and I look forward to that continuing and being a part of it. But I swear if I have to listen to one more conversation about breast feeding and pumping and latching on or sit there while I get a complete second by second run down of what every one of them did in the last twenty-four hours, I may well scream til my brain shoots out my ears.
I started noticing this strange trend when my first nephew was born nearly four years ago, and now with the advent of two more babies in the mix, it's like no one can talk about anything else. It seems impossible to have a conversation at family gatherings that has anything to do with anything non-baby/toddler related. Which leaves me at a distinct disadvantage given that I have no kids, am not versed in the whole baby speak (He's in the 95 percentile - what is that?), nor have any inclination to be. I have nothing to contribute to the conversations. Which perhaps would be okay, if we talked about other things as well. But we don't, especially of late. Every single conversation steers back to this one topic. Its like I have to search out my 3 1/2 year old nephew just to have a normal conversation - if discussing superheroes and their powers can be considered normal.
It's like there's some club that's been formed and I don't have membership status. I'm some peripheral lurker standing on the fringes of a group I used to belong to until the great shift happened, the membership requirements changed and my privileges were revoked.
And I get that the kids are a big deal, and I don't mean for this to come off as some spoiled twit having a narcissistic pity party (although quite frankly, it sounds like that even to me). But I just can't seem to shake the sense that I don't fit in my family any more, like I'm wearing a pair of shoes that don't fit. Or maybe more accurately that my shoes have been swiped and I'm standing around in mismatched socks and not quite sure what to do about it. I feel like I'm drifting away from them, bit by bit. A part of me hangs on with this stubborn grip, and another part shrugs and says in an offhand manner, 'just let go, see what happens...'
Maybe in a strange way, all of this is some cosmic message. I've always been reluctant to go very far from where my family is, but in the past few years I've been feeling antsy, caged in almost. Perhaps these changes, this shift, is just the universe telling me it's okay to move on.
Now, if I could only afford a plane ticket, I'd be all set.