Whatever you do, don’t let your kids learn about procreation from “The Video.” Finding out about the birds and the bees is a lot like finding out there’s no Santa—kids are bound to figure it out eventually, but it’ll go down much easier coming from you.
Mackenzie nods and goes back to her guitar. Until . . .
“The baby grows in the mommy’s tummy, right?”
“More or less.”
“how does that happen . . . exactly?”
Drew rubs his fingers over his lips, thinking it over.
And I hold my breath.
“Well, you know when you’re painting? And you mix blue and red together? And you get . . .”
“Excellent, yes, you get purple. Babies are kind of like that. A little blue paint from the daddy, some red paint from the mommy, shake it all together, and boom—you get a whole new person.
hopefully not purple, but if Aunt Delores is involved? Anything is possible.”
Delores gives Drew the finger behind Mackenzie’s back.
Mackenzie nods. And goes back to strumming her guitar. For one whole minute.
“how does the daddy’s blue paint get to the mommy’s red paint?”
Drew raises both eyebrows. he stutters, “how . . . how does it . . . get there?”
Mackenzie gestures with her hand. “Well, yeah. Does the doctor give her a shot of blue paint? Does the mommy swallow the blue paint?”
Matthew snickers. “Only if the daddy is a very lucky guy.”
Delores smacks him on the head. But Mackenzie’s round blue eyes stay on Drew, waiting for an answer.
he opens his mouth.
And then closes it.
he starts again.
And then stops.
Finally, like cannon-balling into a pool on the first day of spring, he takes the plunge. “Well . . . the mommy and daddy have sex.”
It’s official. Alexandra’s going to kill him. For real this time. I’m going to be a widow before I’m ever a wife.
Mackenzie’s face rumples with confusion. “What’s sex?”
“Sex is how babies get made.”
She thinks about it a moment. And then she nods. “Oh. Okay.”
And I thought the final exams in business school were hard.
Drew handled that pretty well, don’t you think? he’s good with kids. Which makes sense, because in so many ways . . . he still is one.
Alexandra walks into the room. She seems happy, now—now that she’s showed Steven that his “steel guns” can, in fact, be dented.
She’s all glowy.
“What are we doing in here?”
Drew smiles innocently. “Talking about paint colors.”
Alexandra smiles and strokes her daughter’s hair.
As Mackenzie adds, “And sex.”
Alexandra’s hand stops. “Wait . . . what?”
Drew leans over and whispers in my ear, “We should probably leave the room now.”
As the door swings closed behind us, we hear “Drew!” And Alexandra doesn’t sound so happy anymore.
At last, dinner is served. The actual eating of the meal is unevent-ful, but during dessert, Alexandra taps her glass with a spoon.
“Everyone—can I have your attention, please?” She beams at Steven and then goes on. “Mackenzie has an announcement she’d like to make.”
Mackenzie stands on her chair and proclaims, “My mom and dad had sex!”
The entire table is silent.
Until Matthew raises his glass. “Congratulations, Steven. It’s like halley’s Comet, right? You only get to come every seventy-five years?”
And John clears his throat. Awkwardly. “That’s, ah . . . that’s . . .
very nice, dear.”
Then Frank decides to share. “Sex is good. Keeps you regular. I make sure I have sex at least three times a week. Not that my Estelle is into any of that freaky-freaky stuff, but in forty years of marriage, she’s never had a headache.”
Estelle smiles proudly beside him.
And Matthew covers his face with his hands.
The rest of us just stare. Eyes wide, mouths slightly opened.
Until Drew throws his head back and laughs. “That’s so great.”
he wipes his eyes, practically crying.
Alexandra shakes her head. “Wait. There’s more. Go ahead, Mackenzie.”
Mackenzie rolls her eyes. “Well, that means they’re gonna have a baby, of course. I’m gonna be a big sister!”
Congratulations erupt all around. Anne tears up as she hugs her daughter. “I’m so happy for you, honey.”
Drew stands and hugs his sister sweetly. “Congratulations, Lex.” Then he smacks Steven on the back. “I’ll keep the guest room ready for you, man.”
I’m confused. “Guest room?”
Drew explains. “The last time Alexandra was pregnant, she kicked Steven out—not once, not twice, but four f**king times.”
Matthew joins in. “And that’s not counting the time she let him stay, but she threw all his shit out the window.”
Drew chuckles. “It looked like a Barney’s delivery truck exploded on Park Avenue. The homeless were never dressed so well.”
Alexandra rolls her eyes and turns to me. “Pregnancy hormones. They can cause some pretty bad mood swings. I tend to get a little . . . bitchy . . . when I’m pregnant.”
Drew smirks. “As opposed to the rest of the time, when you’re just so pleasant?”
You know how some dogs still keep chewing your shoes—no matter how many times you smack them with a newspaper? They just can’t resist?
Drew is one of those dogs.
Alexandra turns on her brother like a cat hissing at a snake.
“You know, Drew, being with child? It’s kind of like a ‘get out of jail free’ card. There’s not a jury in the country that would convict me.”
he backs away slowly.
I shake my head at him, then ask Alexandra, “Other than that, how are you feeling?”
She shrugs. “Tired, mostly. And the vomiting doesn’t help.
Most women get morning sickness, but I get it at night, which sucks pretty bad.”
They certainly sound familiar.
What? Why are you looking at me like that?
No, no—everyone knows the surest sign of pregnancy is a missed period. And my period’s not due for . . . one . . . two . . .