When the buzzing sound from my alarm clock infiltrated my deep sleep at 5:15 this morning, I awoke immediately, eyes wide. I rarely remember my dreams, but this morning memories of my dream cut vividly through the pre-dawn haze. I could not remember where I was in the dream, and I can't recall any real sequence of events. All I remember is sitting on a wooden floor, staring down at a baby, my baby. I don't know if the baby was a boy or a girl nor who his/her daddy was. I don't remember--or maybe I never knew--whether the bouncy chair he/she sat in was a shiny new gift or an abused hand-me down. What I do remember is looking down with love in my eyes at a tiny, smiling baby and feeling pure, unadulturated happiness.
I don't and have never wanted kids (though I always reserve the right to change my mind). Maybe my "biological clock," which I've always regarded as little more than myth and legend, is ticking away, messing with my subconscious. Maybe the dream was a simple response to the news that one of my friends recently gave birth to a healthy little boy. Maybe the fact that Jack now seems serious about never wanting children (teaching in inner-city Baltimore will do that to a person) is making me worry that if I ever do change my mind and decide I want to have children, he won't be on board. Maybe I should get a puppy.