“So, will you have more?” she asked, lying back on the sofa and watching me playing peek-a-boo with her baby.
“God no” I said.
“Well, first of all there’s the medication. Wouldn’t be a good idea. And I’m old. And even if I did ever meet someone, would anyone be good enough to be a father to the boys? Because that’s what it would mean, and I just can’t imagine it happening.”
“Did you want to have more, would you have, if things had been different?”
“Oh yes, I wanted a football team. I loved being pregnant, love babies and being a mother. It makes life so interesting and exciting, looking through the eyes of a child. Bloody hard work, though.”
She nodded. She too is a single parent.
“What about you?”
“I’d love to have more. If things had been different. But I don’t think I’ll have any. I know I couldn’t do it again on my own. I think this is it.”
I looked at her, beautiful, clever, funny, at least ten years younger than I am, sitting round-eyed and serious and looking slightly sad. The baby laughed, I merely smiled and said nothing. Baby and I returned to our game which now involved trying to lick each other’s noses.
“There are websites, though” she said, brightening.
“What sort of websites?”
“Where single mothers arrange to meet people for sex. One on a Friday and another on a Saturday, say. So they cram it all in on the weekends when they don’t have the children around.”
“Ah! well, casual sex, that’s entirely different. What a brilliant idea.”
We both smiled.