I am still not good at the answer to the question, "So how many kids do you have?"
Then I had Brit.
And just like that, she was gone.
I know I gave birth to her. And some of the people asking remember that I was pregnant.
She is still my birth daughter. But I am not her mother in a parenting sense.
So what do I say?
By saying I have 3 boys, I feel like I am denying her existance. If I say 3 boys and a girl, inevitably it is followed by "Oh I bet you spoil her! One little sister and all those brothers!"
At that moment the tears well up.
I panic and want to run.
Or, even more poignant and painful, sometimes people ask in front of my kids. If I answer 3 boys, the youngest will usually pipe up and say "And a sister, but my mom gave her up for adoption."
I've been working on that with him. But try stopping a 10 year old from saying what's on his mind.
To a stranger it is a conversation stopper.
For me, it is a dagger to the heart.
So, what do you say? Who counts? And do you defend it to just anyone?