Stayed up most of the evening talking to an old friend on the phone. She is newly divorced and juggling two young children. I sometimes think I have it too hard until my reality comes crashing down around me after talking to someone else like last night. I really have it easy when it all boils down to it. She kept telling me she wanted to trade places with me. I scoffed and coughed. I wouldn't want to wish my reality on anyone else, nor would I want her reality as well.
Left the house around 3 A.M. Trudged down to my local convenience store for a free cup of coffee. It was a brutally cold morning with a temp of 28. My favorite clerk was in fine spirits reveling me in tales of last night's customers.
"I had someone try to get a refund on a pack of cigarettes," he told me propped up against his counter.
I smiled and listened intently.
"Wanted to trade it for a beer."
"What did you tell them?" I asked.
"Told her we can't trade tobacco and alcohol products," he replied as he laughed. "It was the biggest line of bullshit and I almost couldn't keep a straight face telling it. I just didn't want to fool with that shit last night."
"Do you have any kids?" I then asked, changing the subject.
"Just curious. I was talking to a friend last night about them. We both agreed they were more trouble than they were worth."
"There are no skeletons in my closet," he replied. "I don't want any kids."
I walked on home thinking of children. I am getting older and my time is passing. Soon, I will be over the hump and headed for sixty. The odds of me having kids decreases every day. I wondered if my life would have taken a different path if I and Rachel could have had children. My life would have certainly been more complicated. I came to the conclusion that it would be selfish of me to bring kids into this crazy world, and with my assorted problems.