Just about everyone I know is having a baby this year. By “everyone” I mean numerous friends who have been in long-term committed relationships, and two otherwise intelligent people in a new relationship, who apparently don’t know about birth control. Maybe it’s the recent moon eclipses, maybe they don’t know the experts say we won’t have any food to eat in a few years’ time, but I think it’s more likely a leap-year phenomenon. I have no data to back this up, but truly, aren’t you finding the same thing? Aren’t your friends procreating like mad? Folklore has it that women can only propose to men in leap years. (Not sure what the penalty is if they are refused, though Wikipedia says in Denmark, it’s 12 pairs of gloves.) So let’s just say leap years come with a mandate to solidify family relationships. But this year must be a special even for a leaper, because many of these gestating couples were good and proper hooked up long before the last one, and they didn’t produce offspring then. Can’t think of many kids born in 2004, though I’m sure millions of them were—just not any belonging to friends of mine.
Most of these leap-year babies will be born to parents in their mid-thirties to early forties, so I must admit that biological imperative is a big part of it. Whatever the reasons, it’s really quite sweet, as they’ll all be gorgeous, really well connected and have friends to play with whom their parents approve of (at least for the first 12 years), go to decent schools and be world travellers. Twenty years ago I was doing the same thing, enthusiastically setting sail on the mommy boat, along with quite a few friends and family members. This time, auntie-hood is calling, and I’m so glad I’ll just be surfing the waves when I feel like, and not be the one scrubbing the decks. Congrats, y’all!