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The other night I had a dream that my parents had a baby.  Knowing full well that this is currently biologically impossible for them, I relaxed, but realized that this was probably my biological clock alerting me to my duty as Only Married Child, and Eldest Child, to produce the first grandchild. 

My mother will be over the moon when we have a baby.  I just know it.  She’s been ready to be a grandmother since my youngest sibling was out of diapers.  Not that she’s ever pressured me (save for a passive aggressive note in our House Warming card) to make her some grandbabies, but I know it’s her calling in life.  She wants to spoil them, to coo over them, to dress them and bake for them, and play with them and feel the warmth that a houseful of sarcastic twenty-something children (home for the holidays and whatnot) seems to have left behind with the My Little Ponies and Pound Puppies. 

I told her about my dream, and she completely missed or ignored the flashing neon sign of its meaning.  She went for the “truthiness” instead, telling me that, biologically, she could very well still serve as a vessel (or whatever euphemism she used), blah, blah, blah.  And really?  So not the point. 

So ready is she that she has acquired yet another dog, which my siblings and I know are surrogate children/grandbabies.  Never mind that she invites chaos into the house, and seems to be satisfied only when impossible situations anre brewing with regularity, she just wants to save the world’s strays.  I guess I’m relieved on 2 accounts: 1) that the city where they live only allows 3 dogs per household without kennel license; and 2) that’s she’s chosen dogs, not foster children.  I don’t know of any such limits on foster children.  Soon after my sister removed her dog from the family home and took it with her to college (thus liberating the poor thing from its oppressively smothering dog sibling, and giving it a new leash on life, pun intended), my mother realized she could not live with only one dog, and had not had only one dog since 1986.  Literally.  When we took in a stray border collie who was the best dog in the world.  Literally.  Well, the newest stray border collie (see: oppressively smothering dog sibling) turned out to be insane, and when the opportunity presented itself two weeks later, Mom adopted a dog she heard about through a co-worker — an abandoned 90 lb chocolate lab.  Mom was thrilled when the lab exuded quiet and adorable dominance, which seemed to put the border collie in her place, or at least cow her suffiiciently that humans can now hug in her presence without getting humped.  What to do, though, about the chaos level?  It was too low.  So, with a week to go before a 1200 mile weekend roadtrip to see my sister’s play, and with a sprained ankle for the regular dogsitter, Mom brought home Jellybean, a fox terrier who ought to spice things up sufficiently. 

Maybe she’ll stop with the surrogate insanity once we produce an heir, but at least the city won’t let her get any new canines until one of the current ones goes to Doggie Heaven, and the eldest is only 7 years old, so it’ll be a while. 

Unless, of course, she figures out how to get a kennel license.

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July 2020