the smell of my desperation has become a stench

Forever a family of four

Where do I begin. Wait, let me check and see if I’ve had enough coffee… oh you shut it. I’ve already admitted that I continue to drink coffee while nursing. Just don’t tell my mom about all that Mountain Dew. She’d FLIP.

So a few months ago, I’d say the morning we brought Marlo home, I told Jon that while I had enjoyed and would recommend having a natural childbirth, that I was in no way, under no circumstances, not ever, NUH UH, going to do it again. And that in order to make sure that the future played out in this exact way, he was going to have to hold up his end of the bargain. It was his turn. Dude needed to have a certain procedure taken care of, because I’ve heard that condoms and birth control are not one hundred percent effective, and you know what is? Say it with me conservative Christians: ABSTINENCE!

Related tangent: I don’t know if I have told you this story before, but in Los Angeles I had a very close friend who’d grown up in Valdosta, Georgia, and every summer she attended Bible School at a local Baptist church, and they’d hold rallies for Jesus that included one group of children screaming, “WHEN I SAY JESUS, YOU SAY JESUS. SAY, ‘JESUS!'” And then another group of children across the room would scream, “JESUS!” Kind of like cheerleaders at a football game, except Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ was the one passing the ball.

I don’t know why I love that chant, but I do, I LOVE IT, maybe because Mormons would never participate in something so blatantly irreverent. You just can’t go tossing around the Lord’s name like that, haven’t you read the ten commandments? I think it’s the one right after THOU SHALT NOT DRINK COFFEE. Oh, wait. Wrong book. Doesn’t matter. All I know is I love shouting JESUS! Almost as much as I love shouting SHINGLES!

So a couple of weeks ago Jon went in for a consultation with a urologist and saw some weird, funky movie starring men in very tight European shorts, apparently, I don’t know, I wasn’t there, I’ll let him tell you that part of the story. And then yesterday we drove down to the same hospital where I delivered Marlo for his vasectomy. We’ll get to that part in a second, but first, I cannot even begin to explain how nauseated I felt when we turned the corner and I saw that hospital. Like, hobo on a bourbon binge fell off the train and woke up naked next to the dumpster outside of IHOP nauseated.

Yes, this is now The Hobo Blog.

Because last time I was there I was having contractions so violent that I was certain I was going to look down and see that the lower half of my body had been ripped off all while Leta was in the back seat going WHY IS MOM MAKING THAT NOISE?! So when we pull into the parking lot I involuntarily turn toward the empty back seat and go MOMMY IS FINE! MOMMY IS FINE!

If THAT isn’t a picture of someone perfectly sane.

So Jon is lying there on the operating table – hoo! I know I’m not a guy and I cannot relate, but if I had balls I think I’d rather not ever have them and the words OPERATING TABLE in the same sentence – nude from the waist down, and I’m sitting in a chair next to him, holding his hand, situated just enough below the table that I don’t have to see anything. Because, you know, I’D LIKE TO SLEEP AT NIGHT.

And remember, Jon almost fainted once when a nurse approached him with a needle to draw his blood. Not when she put the needle in his arm. WHEN SHE WALKED UP TO HIM. So you can imagine the wincing and almost losing consciousness that was going on as the doctor prepped his tray full of scissors and scalpels and KNIVES AND GUNS AND GRENADES!

Jon is out of breath, sweating, clutching my hand, and I am doing everything I can not to laugh. Because the doctor has not even touched him yet. And I’m trying SO HARD to be the support that he needs when suddenly the doctor gently drops a wet, sanitary wipe directly ON THE AREA (notice: I have not once used the word NADS, BOW BEFORE MY RESTRAINT) and Jon jumps three feet into the air. Literally. Every limb of that 6′ 3” body came off that table. What did it look like? Remember when Kramer would clumsily open the door to Seinfeld’s apartment? THAT.

And that doctor is all, DUDE, it was a napkin! OH MY GOD. I felt like I was trying to muffle my laughter during the eulogy at a funeral!

The cringing and flailing limbs continue as the doctor injects a local anesthetic ON THE AREA, and then when he performs the dreaded poke test Jon flatlines on the table. Dead. Gone. And then he suddenly comes back to life with a hearty WATCH IT, BUDDY!

That’s exactly what he said. WATCH IT, BUDDY. And it seemed so appropriate, like, he couldn’t have phrased it better, because when someone is holding a scalpel over your balls? What do you call him? STAN? JOE? NO. YOU CALL HIM BUDDY. Buddy and your balls. THE TWO GO TOGETHER.

I imagine Jon felt like he was staring at a gun and was trying to calm the mugger down. Like, buddy, listen. You have the rest of your life ahead of you, buddy. Please don’t kill me. Here, take my wallet, buddy. Just leave me my balls.

And this is the part I will not ever forget, the best part, the climax of the vasectomy, no pun intended. Jon is going OW! OW! OW! STOP! OW! STOP! STOP! And the doctor holds up both hands, steps a foot away from the table, and goes I AM NOT EVEN TOUCHING YOU. He waves both hands in the air to prove it, and Jon feverishly looks up through the sweat that has now flooded his eyes and goes, “Oh. Okay.”

And then I was done, I had my head between my knees and I let it all out, the laughing until I cried, the guffaws, I just couldn’t hold it in any longer. My poor little bunny:

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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