I think I’ve finally come to the conclusion that my baby days are over. It’s a hard idea for me to accept. I’m 41 and it’s not like I can’t have another baby, but I also have a 13 year old and an 11 year old (with autism). Throwing a new sibling into their lives would…come to think of it, it wouldn’t do much. They’re boys. It’s not like they’re going to babysit the little one the way I did when I was 12 and Karin was born. They’d be interested for a while, until the first night feeding wakes them from a sound sleep. It probably wouldn’t. The Conrail freight train goes by our apartment every night and they never hear it. There went that idea.
But aside from that, I’ve finally accepted that the only babies I have left to create will be on paper. Heck, I’m taking Kara from near infancy to adulthood. (And I don’t have to put her through college; with any luck and talent, she’ll put Ryan through college!) The rest are all born in my head, mostly fully grown, and it’s up to me to get their lives down on paper so the rest of the world can meet them. When I finish the last edit is when I let go and release them to make their own way in the cold, cruel world. Good luck and God bless.
I’m sure most of my VFRW chapter buddies would agree, writing is a lot like childbirth, only it takes longer and it hurts more. If it doesn’t hurt, it’s not good enough. We have to pry these emotions out of ourselves and write them down whether we want to or not, because it’s going to have to happen if the story wants life. We take these “babies” and love them and nurture them, and then we set them free and hope we’ve given them the strength to develop a life of their own so they can touch other people, make people feel and think and see things they wouldn’t have, had they not met our “babies”.
My cousin sent out a letter when her kids were born, saying “Today M and I became parents”. I always thought that was a foolish, romanticized view of childbirth, and for a romance writer, I don’t see romance in a whole lot of things in this world. Yesterday someone asked about the “Sex and the City” movie, and I said that I think there’s no connection between marriage and romance; people who are happy should leave well enough alone. The same, I think, fits for me. There probably won’t be any more babies in my future, much as I loved being pregnant. Now my births will all be two at a time, to a hero and heroine, and I can’t say I’m going to love them any less than the flesh and blood people who call me Mom. (Except they won’t leave their underwear on the floor. Well, maybe they will, but only because that’s what they’re supposed to do.) 🙂