I have been together since we met at the Tower Court Mixer at Wellesley the
night before my first day of classes in my first year. When Baby Michaud arrives,
we will have been together almost fifteen years, and married for over ten
of them (Robert calculates these things down to the months and weeks, but
that's not quite my level of precision).
Like my parents,
who were married fifteen years before they had me, Robert and I had plenty
of time just for us, for crazy running-out-for-ice-cream times or opening-night
movies until 4:00 in the morning. I don’t mean to say there will never
be anything spontaneous again, or that we’ll never take anymore long
rambling trips again—just that we realize that life changes with a child,
and that's okay: we don’t feel like we missed out on anything, on any
part of our lives, so far. We also didn't want to be like the stereotypical
smart couple in Idiocracy who forever postpones having a baby because
it's not the "right time"—we decided that now, really, was
the economist, thought of it this way:
enough money to have a child—we live well but still save money, so
while money isn't everything, we know we can afford a child and the expenses that go along with one;
enough space—we’ve got an extra bedroom and an extra half bath,
and while our apartment (as Robert’s mother, the doyenne of suburbia,
keeps reminding us) isn’t huge, it’s plenty big enough for us
plus another, smaller, being;
enough time—we both work full-time but have some flexibility in our
schedules, and we've each been a lot more busy in the past than we are now
(what with renovating apartments and writing books on top of our regular
jobs), so we know that together we can handle the second shift of parenthood
together on top of what we do now;
enough love (yes, key the “awwwwww” sound at this point)—we’re
happy together, and we believe we have enough joy and love to keep us going
and to share with a child.
We are planning a natural,
midwife-attended homebirth; since I'm not having any tests done that are not
medically necessary, we will not find out the baby's sex until birth. For now,
we've chosen a girl's name and a boy's name: Grace Leia, for a girl,
and Marcus Omer, for a boy.
Grace was my
mother's oldest sister, my strong and much-loved Aunt Grace. Robert's maternal
grandmother is also named Grace (though we usually think of her as Grandma
Gracie), and his paternal grandmother's favorite sister was also a Grace.
Leia, of course,
needs no explanation (or at least I thought it didn't—until my friend
Cori said, "Wait, do you like Star Wars?" to which I replied,
"Um, there's a life-sized cardboard cut-out of R2-D2 in my dining room—where
have you been?").
Marcus is the
name of the eccentric mathematician brother of A.S. Byatt's alter-ego character
Frederica in The Virgin in the Garden, Still Life, and other
books. It's also the name of the first human ranger on Babylon 5 and
a somewhat annoying but strong-leader character on Jeremiah. More
importantly, it's also one of the only male names in existence that
Robert and I both really liked sound-wise.
Omer was Robert's
paternal grandfather's name, and it became both Robert and his father's middle
name; we figured we'd carry on the French family tradition and use it if we
have a boy.