After much consideration (read: too many nights of interupted sleep and way more of other people's bodily fluids than I ever wanted to deal with), my Bride and I have decided that two kids is enough.
Now one day, the Critter and Squirmy are going to be old enough to read this, and I want to be clear - we like both of you. We don't mind dealing with the work you cause, or the cost of feeding and schoolign you. Or dealing with your various excretions and midnight demands. OK. Maybe "like" is too strong a word. But we put up with you. And that's more than I'd do for a lot of people.
Now that we have one of each gender, however, we've fulfilled our evolutionary obligation to the survival of the species by replacing ourselves. So we can really be done, thank you. Which makes me a tiny bit sad, every time I think that some particular thing that Squirmy does is the last time I'll ever get to experience that thing first hand. But only a tiny bit, and only for a second, and then I'm pretty much over it.
So this week, I scheduled a visit to my doctor, to seek medical intervention in ensuring that I'm no longer able to contribute genetic material. I've read about vasectomies, and known people that have gotten them, as well as a few dogs, and several horses, 'and I'm totally cool with the idea at this point.
Fortunately for me, I guess, I can count on one hand the number of times I've visited the doctor in the last ten years. NASA changes out the astronauts on the international space station about five times as frequently as I make a visit to my friendly neighborhood physician. Which is a good thing, but I don't exactly have a trusted confidante in my doctor. I take more care making an appointment with the lady that cuts my hair than I do with my doctor. Hell, I don't even have a doctor. Rather, I just called the local practice and ask for first available, as to me, they're pretty much as interchangeable to me as I'm sure I am to them.
So that's how I ended up in Dr. Greenwood's office last Friday, telling him that I wanted one of his colleagues to take a sharp, pointy instrument to my front-bottom, and perform a life-changing surgery. I didn't recognize Dr. Greenwood from my infrequent visits to the practice before - I don't actually remember any of their faces, but I surely would have recognized his hands. I was half-prepared to launch into a discussion about our reasoning, family situation, and psychological readiness for this decision. Based on my recent experiences with the NHS and boy parts, I expected to have to convince the good doctor that I wasn't there on a lark, and yes, I really did want him to help me become infertile. I had charts of the increasing cost of education and photographs of a week's worth of dirty diapers in a multimedia presentation to back me up.
Doctor Small Hands: "How can I help you today?"
Me: "I want a vasectomy."
Doctor S-H: "No problem."
Me: "Yes, I've thought... wait. OK? Don't you need to talk me through it or something? Ask me if I'm really sure, that kind of thing? "
Doctor S-H: "Well, I could if you wanted me to. Do you want me to?"
Me:: "No, no. I'm sure. It's ok."
Doctor S-H: "OK then. I'll write you a referral letter today. I've got a guy."
Doctor S-H: "Yes. He does them all the time. That's the trick. You want someone who's done these things before."
Me: "Yes, I suppose that makes sense."
So with that, I have thrust myself into the hands of the National Health Service again, with some degree of trepidation, I have to admit. But at least this time, there's less judgement involved.