Friday, February 23, 2007

Send Him Back!

Yesterday on the treadmill, I began thinking about my younger brother. He and his wife are having a baby boy in June. I asked him what they were going to name him and he wouldn't tell me.

This must be like some new trend for expecting parents, Drew's friend Dan did the same thing. I'm guessing there are articles that say to keep the names to yourself so nobody will sway or criticize you. In a way, I agree. My baby names would always make people cringe. Not that I'm in a position to have a baby, but before I settled on the name Ben, I always liked Oliver, Chase, Josh, Adam, Nigel, Sebastian, Shamus, names that people hated. A while ago Drew and I were joking about having a baby and (I only want a son) agreed on the name Chandler Devon. When I told my family at Christmas they went into hysterics and it made me feel bad. What if I really had a kid and named him that?

This blog wasn't supposed to be about baby names. What I was really thinking about while on the treadmill, was in addition to his "don't ask-don't tell" baby name policy, I remembered the day my brother was born. It's a story my family told and retold for years. Apparently I thought my mom was having a girl. I'm not sure exactly if she knew she was having a boy and I was in denial or if back in 1976, they couldn't tell the sex and she truly didn't know... whatever the case. I remember that day vividly, yet I was only 3.5 years old. My Uncle Tony (he was in high school then) and his girlfriend Nancy were driving us around in his convertible. It was a super hot August day either the 15th or 16th... I was yelling out to the world in this three-year-old singsong voice, "Mommy's having a baby! Mommy's having a baby!" My uncle was nutty and still is, so I'm sure he encouraged that sort of excitement, in fact, I think he too was singing along with me or maybe even started it.

The next chain of events are a blur and we fast forward to a scene I can only really recall because someone has a photo of it in one of their photo albums. I think we're at the hospital and I'm in the backseat of my uncle's car on the floor hysterical. Crying my eyes out. Bright red face, soaking wet messy hair with tears and sweat dripping off of me with my fists pounding like nobody's biz... I had just found out my mom had a boy. I wanted a sister. I remember chanting, "Send him back! Send it back! I don't want a boy!" To my dismay everyone thought this was funny. It was like a big joke only I wasn't joking. I didn't want a brother. I wanted a sister to play dolls with. Someone to play dress up with. Funny because I always picked out my brother's clothing - even in high school I had a say in what he wore. I made sure he was a mini-me in the '90s. We shared oversized skate and band t-shirts and both wore a men's 9 Puma.

Anyway, to ease my anxiety about this boy baby, my dad ran out and bought a male "Joey Doll" complete with a boy pee-pee! I'm not sure if "Joey" was a real doll name since my brother's name was Joey. I'm thinking it might have been because All In The Family was popular then and Gloria had given birth to 'baby Joey." Oh boy, I just checked on eBay and it really was a doll. See below... I remember that blue baby blanket too! Ha ha!

OK, so I now had this baby Joey doll. My dad also brought me a wooden high chair and wooden crib. I was in heaven. As mom would feed the real Joey, I would feed Joey Doll. As mom put real Joey to bed, I would tuck Joey Doll into bed. It worked. My dad was a genius. I guess having parents as teachers, paid off. All their behavior classes must have equipped them for my new-baby adjustment issues or they were just clever parents. Ha ha. I wish I still had that doll!

My brother and me in 1976 (look at how my arm is around him, ha ha) and of course I'm yelling something... People call him "Joe" now, but Mom and I still call him "Joey."


Ally said...

Ha ha! That was the way it appeared on eBay. I guess it's to show you it's new, but wow, I never thought of that. Ha ha!

Vicky said...

Oh my goodness, I can so relate! My mother said I ran to the bedroom and kept poking my brother when he first came home from the hospital... I guess our parents thought alike in getting us our own dolls :)

RainyDaySaver said...

This is too funny -- I was the EXACT same age and had the same reaction when they brought my little brother home. I totally had a temper tantrum and demanded they "send him back"!

helen725 said...

This is kind if related, but when my niece who is now 13, was 2 was going to become a big sister so my mother-in-law asked me to buy her a baby doll. I bought her the doll which came with a baby bottle, food, diapers etc. When I got home, I took a look at the doll and realized that she was missing her thumb. I had to go back to the store to exchange the doll for another one. Imagine giving a 2 year old a deformed doll!! Luckily I spared her having nightmares about the doll!


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