Archives of Our Lives

{a narrow and broad look into the lives of people I love}

Sunday, February 17, 2008

No, I Won't. Please Stop Asking.

Some ladies in the blogging world are feeling very anxious to produce children as of late, I've noticed. "It's all I think about," they write, "I can hardly stand seeing all the other pregnant ladies around me all day!" I am the polar opposite. When I wake up in the morning, it is to an alarm clock, not a screaming child--and I am aware of that. When I cook dinner, it is dinner for two. Made by one--not one mother and five whiny children--and I notice. My life is calm, for the most part. My time is mine. I am young. My biological clock is not least not very loudly. I am not ready to have children.

Now, lest you think otherwise, please know: I am a good person. I've said it before, and I'll continue saying it until--should it ever happen--I no longer feel worthy of the sentiment.

I help people--I do. Okay, sometimes I don't [I always feel bad in such instances], but usually I do. I like elderly citizens; I value their knowledge, wisdom and experience. I almost always put my shopping cart in the corral when I'm through buying groceries. I wipe down sinks in public restrooms with paper towels, and dad gummit, people like me!

I'm good.

But I don't like children. Does that lower my rating on the goodpersonometer? Does it mean I might not make it into heaven? Listen--I would do anything for anyone in a pinch. One time I was at the Home Depot and there was this crazy woman who had seven children with her (two in wheelchairs) and she was trying to navigate them through the store with 20-foot lengths of crown molding and a cart full of pillars for a banister. I offered to push one of her carts, while herding four of the children to the checkout aisle, keeping them entertained all the while. She was in a pinch, and I helped her. Because I'm good. But if we had become friends and she called me up one day, asking me to babysit even one of her children while she went to get a manicure, I would flatly refuse. You know? I don't like children.

And I've learned a little something about small-town people since moving to Mayberry: they have lots of children. For some reason, my status as a newly-married stay-at-home wife who isn't legal to work or go to school *yet*, gives Mayberrians the idea that during all my free time, I'd fancy tending their little angels. Yes, I spent five months working as a nanny--but that was exotic. I lived in Europe. I ate, drove, learned French, and traveled the continent and got paid to do it, with two days off per week, and a Mercedes Benz at my disposal. Sure, I grew to love my charge, and hope to see them again someday soon. But a temporary nanny does not a child-lover make.

I've learned that when people here in Mayberry find out my time is actually my own, they automatically assume I don't like it that way. People jump at the opportunity to fill my time for me, and more often than not, their "solutions" to my "woes" involve children. I've decided to get that one thing clear with people as soon as I meet them.

Lady in line ahead of me at the funeral viewing last week: So, Camille...are you working right now?
Me: No, I'm getting my paperwork filled out to become a permanent resident, which will allow me to work legally and attend University for half-price tuition. It's actually a lot of fun! I'm spending loads of time around the house. I don't babysit, though.
Lady (chuckling): Oh, really? Well, do you volunteer anywhere?
Me: Yeah, definitely. For sure. Since I'm such a good person, I'm always looking to get involved in the community. In fact, I've just started volunteering at the town museum and another one in Lethbridge. It's really fun. Why, what do you have in mind?
Lady: Well, the reason I ask is because I run the Parent Link program at the elementary school, and we sure could use an extra set of hands on Fridays.
Me (my eyes reflecting, I'm sure, the sheer dread in my heart I felt at the mention of the words "elementary school"): Oh? Well that sounds...interesting. I've never heard of the Parent Link program. What does it involve?
Lady: Oh, you's really easy, and fun, too! You would basically just...hold babies...set out there in case of emergencies...provide an extra set of eyes...get CPR certified...of course you'd need your flu shots and lots of hand sanitizer...some of those parents come with three or four children, and it's our job to care for each and every child.


What part of "I don't babysit" is so difficult to comprehend?

p.s. I think I might start boycotting any and all blogs with those nasty little "45 Days Until Baby" countdowns. Have you seen those? They have animated embryo bouncing around in what I assume is an e-womb. All balled up in the fetal position, the little buggers look every bit as much like a rat as they did in 9th Grade Biology. I'm very happy for people who are having children and fulfilling their life goals, but...can't they count down to the blessed occasion with...just a number? Why do they have to flash alien-looking fetuses in my face? Good grief. Whoever thought that was a good idea...



Blogger LetterToKayleen said...

i barely like my own kids.

jay kay. jay kay. i love 'em...because i have to.

those countdown 'til baby things are the worst. if i wanted to stare at your fetus all day while i spy on your private life, i would of found a way to make it to your ultrasound. they make me want to throw up in my mouth.

February 18, 2008 at 6:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I absolutely LOVE this post!!! This reeks of you. And you know what? I don't blame you one little bit! I feel the exact same way. (Ditto to what Kayleen said, by the way.) I used to HATE it when people found out we were newly-married and without children of our own. Bless their hearts, they seemed to think that there was a horrible void in my life because I did not have screaming bundles of joy of my own, and they felt the need to fill that void with their precious cherubs. They didn't seem to realize that if I wanted children, I'd have my own...

Anyway, I want to know what you told woman-in-funeral-viewing line to get out of it...

February 18, 2008 at 9:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hehe... great post! that nanny thing sounds so fun!

February 18, 2008 at 9:44 AM  
Blogger Aimee said...

Oh Camille, please don't boycott our site. I have to agree with you - you should have seen what that little thing looked like 4 months ago! But I use it to humor my husband - who finds it rather amusing, and honestly helps him remember the due date. It's only for 34 more days and I PROMISE that the sequence of events in this house will be
1. I think I'm in labor, my water broke, etc.
2. Grab the overnight bag
3. Take the widget off the blog
4. Drive to the hospital.

No hard feelings, though, if you just can't stomach visiting our site for a month. :)

February 18, 2008 at 10:59 AM  
Blogger theycallmeaft said...

camille. i feel the exact same way. (well, actually not the EXACT same way. i actually like kids but the only baby sitting i do is for my own flesh and blood) just the other day though i was sitting in the BYU parking lot and watched this younger than me girl carry her at least 2.5 year old child across the parking lot with child sized backpack and diaper bag in hand. and the only thing i thought to myself was "WOW i am SO glad i am not a mother yet!" (on one hand i'm not married yet so its a dang good thing i'm not a mother) but still any sight of young mothers looking blissful while pushing their double wide strollers through the snow only makes me more grateful that i am childless.

February 18, 2008 at 11:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That which we most protest is often that which we want most.

February 18, 2008 at 1:18 PM  
Blogger Lindsey Burnham said...

Oh Camille! Funny funny funny. I honestly laughed out loud 4 times! Thank you for telling people no. I don't think that people should do things that they don't want to!

February 18, 2008 at 2:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

psh. just cuz YOU dont want kids, doesnt mean other people cant be excited for one.
maybe you are enjoying your newlywed life... but for goodness sake dont mock others who relish in the joy of expecting life.
and you know what, i could care less if you boycott all the happy childbearing peoples blogs. its your freakin loss.
when i finally have the BLESSING (YES BLESSING!!!) of being a mother, you best believe that is all i will post about.
my pregnancy, my birth, my children.
deal with it. and lose my friendship. see if i freakin care.

February 18, 2008 at 3:31 PM  
Anonymous Jessica said...

Oh, but just wait until you actually DO become a mother (because I don't believe you when you say you aren't having any kids).

Then you'll understand.

Because you'll live somewhere where you don't have any family or really good friends and you will be DYING to get out of the house without your kids. Wouldn't it be nice if you found someone who was newly married, without children or a job, who could come to your rescue every now and then?

Once you become a mom, your pride becomes obsolete.

February 18, 2008 at 3:53 PM  
Blogger LetterToKayleen said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

February 18, 2008 at 3:59 PM  
Blogger LetterToKayleen said...

that anonymous comment above was me.

just trying stir the pot.

February 18, 2008 at 4:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

meybe if u got a job peple would stop bugging u. just a thought.

February 18, 2008 at 4:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I frown upon you.

February 18, 2008 at 4:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hopped on your blog for a little entertainment and got a lot of it. I was laughing inside for most of what you wrote. Then I got to the last paragraph and the part where you said e-womb and I laughed out loud to the point of tears. How are you so funny? I love you...I miss you...
-Tom (of the order)

February 18, 2008 at 4:57 PM  
Blogger angela hardison said...

I actually LOVE kids, but I'm so not ready for my own yet. I couldn't agree with you more about the e-womb and fetuses... I think that's the funniest thing I've ever read. Really.

February 18, 2008 at 6:29 PM  
Blogger Jami said...

wow, you really got some people going! Good job! this post really does just sound like you are standing right next to me, talking...I LOVE IT! I feel like baby sitting falls under these people
1. My mom, or aunt, or grandma (they love it when they can babysit grace)
2. Or a laural in the ward, and they should get paid
3. OR, trade sitting with anouther mom
I would never ask some cute newlywed couple to babysit, you have enough time with you kids when you have them, no need to add to that time by watching other peoples kids!
People always ask my mom to babysit...they think that just because she doesn't have kids at home that she would love to watch theirs, it is retarded!

February 18, 2008 at 8:42 PM  
Blogger Loralee Choate said...

I'm pretty much a "Live and let blog" person, ya know? There are so many things that I find tacky or lame, but it's that persons blog and I have been around enough and changed my mind about so many things I never thought I would, that I just try to give people their freedom to be themselves.

THAT said, I never ask my friends or people without kids to babysit. NEVER.

I find it horribly rude to assume something like that. So? Unless someone has said "I'd love to help you out some time" I just don't go there.

February 18, 2008 at 8:43 PM  
Blogger Cristin said...

That also seems strange to me that people would ask you to babysit. I'm so wary of doing that if it's not a trade or I'm not paying them. What nerve.

I kind of get the feeling your experiencing the whole "just got married, when are you going to have a baby thing." We were married 4 1/2 years before we had a child, but I never minded watching kids every once in awhile because I knew I could give them back. Watching other people's kids is nothing compared to watching your own. Really - there is no comparison.

You've noticed I don't have one of those e-womb things on my blog. Mostly because I hate being reminded of how much time I have left, but now that I know it creeps you out, I really won't put one on. :)

February 18, 2008 at 10:30 PM  
Blogger The MomBabe said...

Ahh, love the assumptions. I like my own kids. Other people's? Not so much.

And for the record, there's nothing wrong with that. I myself am a fairly fantastic mother, wretched sitter, but fabulous mom.

February 19, 2008 at 7:45 AM  
Blogger LetterToKayleen said...

you know i was lying about being the anonymous poster, right? okay, good...just making sure.

February 20, 2008 at 10:33 AM  
Blogger SuperCoolMom said...

Oh you're cracking me up! When I was 20 I was called to be a cub scout leader. Now, I wanted a baby, but WTH, I did NOT want 5 eleven year old boys! My biggest fear was that I would become one of those ladies with their own yellow scout shirt! I did it, and we ended up having a good time. But, yeah, there's a time and a place for it. Obviously this isn't your kid time - enjoy your freedom! You'll enjoy your own kids later.

February 20, 2008 at 1:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

rat looking fetus?
do you have a therapist?
you are consumed by greed

i once treated a patient who had packed herself with dirt on escape from lethbridge hospital.
you've been damaged.
you married a man who wants children. you have deceived many people.

fu, jeff

March 8, 2008 at 11:43 PM  
Anonymous commonsense said...

i agree with jeff. you are damaged.and i might add, you sound like one mean little brat.
have you ever heard of jesus christ? he believed, so they say, that we were given our lives here to have families. families are forever, or at least they used to be. do you ever wonder what good you're doing? try being nice, use that for your legacy.

March 9, 2008 at 1:33 PM  
Anonymous commonsense said...

i agree with jeff. you are damaged.and i might add, you sound like one mean little brat.
have you ever heard of jesus christ? he believed, so they say, that we were given our lives here to have families. families are forever, or at least they used to be. do you ever wonder what good you're doing? try being nice, use that for your legacy.

March 9, 2008 at 1:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

and you are talking about jesus christ? that's so hypocrital. if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all

March 10, 2008 at 4:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

and you are talking about jesus christ? that's so hypocrital. if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all

March 10, 2008 at 4:01 PM  
Anonymous anonymous, who stole "commonsense" name said...

that's a good idea. i was being very hypocritical. i won't comment again, i don't really know camille, but i apologise to her for what i said.
my mom used to say that too...if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all. if i was better at remembering her wise words, i might have a friend or two.

also, i'm sorry to you other readers for bringing such unkindness here.

March 10, 2008 at 4:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

love it
jesus christ?
never heard of him
beyond the grasp of you phlebes
the great unwashed

March 11, 2008 at 5:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i love this whole concept of being nice for no good reason.
however, saying nothing seems unlikely on cammiblog.

why be nice?
you tell me.
and then tell camminator.

March 11, 2008 at 6:12 AM  

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