When I was junior in high school, I packed into the back of my mother's mini van with a handful of friends and we headed south to Dallas for the Fleetwood Mac Reunion Tour. We gutted the seats and sat in a circle. We smoke cigarettes. Some of us smoked other things as well. We held the flame to lighters until our thumbs grew blisters. It was one of those trips that defines youth, living free, taking adventures, being carefree. We drank expensive beers and we all marveled by my ability to not being carded, which I thought was a definite sign of my ultra coolness. Yes, we all had drinks, many drinks, all of us but Mollie.
Not long after the trip, Mollie shocked us all with the revelation that she was, like, almost 8 months pregnant. Underneath flannel shirts and vintage jeans, she had hidden Hannah from us all, her mother included. And when she told me of the pregnancy, I just felt tremendous guilt for the 200 cigarettes I sucked down 2 feet in front of her in a airtight van. My awareness of responsibility at the time pretty much would've ended there, but holy shit, I would've at least cracked a window.
Now, for you to fully understand the impact of this bombshell, you need to know that Mollie is a genius. I don't say that lightly. She scored, like, a 34 on her ACT when we were freshmen. We would marvel wide-eyed as she would take on teachers and out debate them. If there was ever a case of someone being too smart for their own good, this would be it. So, as the prune-faced adult figures in our lives found out about the pregnancy, they thought she had royally screwed up. Hell, I kinda agreed.
Fast-forward a decade. A few years after Hannah was born, Mollie stumbled upon her man Ronnie and they got to reproducing Old World Catholic Style. They had Adie and 15 months later had Wyatt and then 15 months later had Carson. And with each little child, Hannah grows more into Super Nanny.
Mollie brought her crew out to visit one Autumn afternoon. Ridge was nearly a 3-year-old and Rolan had just turned 2. To give an age comparison of our kids, her baby Carson is almost the exact same age as my oldest Ridge.
As one child would toddle up the road and another would roll down the hill, I would spring up to chase them. Mollie would all nonchalantly tell me to sit back down, then she would send Hannah a-fetchin.'
One kid was licking snot from his top lip, Hannah would swoop in with a Kleenex. Another would whine over hunger, Hannah would peel a banana. As I watched this child wonder, a super nanny if I've ever freakin' seen one, I offered Mollie money to buy her. I know, I know. That's illegal. Mollie won't freakin' give her up, dammit, so I'm thinking about kidnapping her. Don't judge me, you have the same scandalous plots if you'd seen her in action.
And then, over my like 12th monetary bid for Hannah, Mollie made a quite profound statement, "Back when we were 17 and I had Hannah, you guys all thought I was fucking up. Well, who's laughing now? It turned out to be meticulous planning."
And, she's totally right.
This last weekend my friend Miranda's girls spent Friday night and Saturday afternoon with us. Her baby Aaralyn is also Ridge's age and her oldest, Madilyn, will be 7 this February. She's a bit younger than Hannah, so there are some things she can't quite do yet. But, I could see as she mothered her little sister and my two boys that she'll make a great child slave. Plus, like Hannah, her eagerness to please will make her totally oblivious to the fact that I am exploiting her maternal instincts and boundless energy. Her momma wasn't a teenager when she was born, though.
So, listen up, folks: I am in the market for a Hannah or a Madilyn. Apparently their mothers want to keep them, which I think is utter bullshit. Can't they see that I'm working to death out here? Don't you think they should, in the very least, share the wealth?
Now, for all you teenage girls out there, I'm gonna give you the truth. When all those uptight parentals are preaching the dangers of teenage pregnancy, plant your fingers in your ears and stick your tongue out. This isn't bad, this is good. The government will fork over the cash for your medical bills and food and you will get a bright-eyed little slave to care for all your future children.