Sunday night, while putting Scarlett to bed, I got to the portion of the routine where I turn out the lights and sing her songs. She did not want to sing songs while sitting on Daddy's lap in the rocking chair like we usually do. She wanted to sit in the chair by herself while Daddy leaned on the front of the chair and sang to her. I was exhausted, so I acquiesced. This meant that I was staring directly into her face while I sang her songs. I've never done this before while putting her to bed. At first it was fine -- mostly because she wanted to sing the "Notre Dame Victory March" -- but once she requested "You Are My Sunshine" I fought to hold back tears as her sweet little face stared at me as she quietly sang along. It was at that moment I realized I can never have another child.
Once Scarlett was born, the piece of me that was able to control my emotions stopped functioning. Now I'm emotionally raw and much closer to tears at any moment than you would ever think -- tears of joy or tears of sadness. Commercials make me cry. Any kind of human achievement in the face of adversity makes me well up with tears. It doesn't even have to be remarkable. If I see someone who sprained his ankle bravely make it up a flight of stairs, I'm on the verge of tears. Forget about something like a child with a prosthetic leg learning to play soccer. I'm a mess just thinking about it.
Scarlett came along and opened me up. I'm affected by the things around me more than I ever had been before. If I were to have another child I don't think I could actually operate in the world. In order to open myself up enough to love both Scarlett and another child (not to mention Dee) I would be a constant well of emotions. I would always be crying or laughing. I would walk up to random strangers on the street and hug them and say things like, "It's okay, man. Everything's going to be okay." Simply because I understand the struggle of being human in this world. I would tell every woman I see how beautiful she is because, goddamn it, every woman is beautiful and that's a gift the world refuses to recognize. I would agree with people who say the final season of The Office was funny. I would cry myself to sleep every night because of, oh man, the beauty and, oh no, the sadness. All of the beauty and sadness. I wouldn't be a useful human being anymore. There's a good chance I'd morph into a ball of emotion and explode.
I'm broken inside. Broken in the best possible way and another child might just be my end.