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Zodiacs, part 3

After producing winter and spring babies, Husband and I shook it up a little with kid number three and had her in the fall. A Libra! Finally, a reprieve! What could be better than a Libra? In our increasingly chaotic household, our little scales was a welcome addition: she was the balanced baby, easygoing, happy, bubbly, and kindhearted. A delight!

A delight with a dark side, of course, because like all of her sign mates, Libra’s sky is always falling. As the resident Scorpio, deep, irrational emotional upheaval is supposed to be my métier, but Libra gradually supplanted me in the unholy freak-out over literally nothing arena.

Want an engaging, loveable, snuggly little pal to watch a movie with? Libra’s your girl. Also, want a wide-eyed, reactionary sous chef who will cry if you ask who left the twist tie off the bread bag? Libra’s your girl for that, too.

The flip side of all that intense feeling is a beautiful and creative spirit. Sure, sometimes she channels all that emotion into falling apart over the crushing loss of not being able to find matching socks, but as she gets older, she’s also starting to channel it into wonderful artistic enterprises: baking and dessert decorating, voice acting, story-telling, fashion. True to her sign, she has an artist’s heart.

Just don’t mention the twist tie.

Once we’d had three kids in three different months, my overwhelming need to control my surroundings and my irrational desire to impose order where there frankly doesn’t need to be any kicked in, and we had a summer baby. This was good because after my first few kids, I was like “maybe one more?” but after this kid, I was like “there are no more seasons, so tie my tubes.” Did I mention I like order?

Cancer was born at the end of June, and immediately he disrupted the whole household because A) he was the youngest, the most universally reviled birth-order position and B) he was a Cancer, the most compatible sign with my ridiculous farce of a personality.

To be honest, lots of people claim Cancers are actually worse than Scorpios, which I don’t necessarily agree with, but I definitely see where they’re coming from. True to his sign, Cancer is the most ludicrously emotional amalgamation of organic structures in the house. He’s like a giant nerve ending with a faux-hawk. This is great when I want to trick everyone into getting excited about something they shouldn’t be excited about. For example, I can say to Cancer “want to jump into a big pile of leaves?” and he’ll get so excited that I have to fan him with a magazine. But I can also repurpose that excitement pretty easily: “Me too! Go get the other kids, and let’s make a big pile!”

This is the point when Taurus says, “Calm down, Cancer. Mom’s just trying to get us to rake the yard.”

Darn that Taurus and her big brain!

But Cancer hasn’t always used his emotions for good. When he was little, Cancer would get so crushed by disappointment or censure that he’d threaten to jump out of the window or step in front of a car. Unlike Libra, his emotional outbursts weren’t limited to crushing sadness: he also had variations ready to deploy for having to wait longer than expected, last minute schedule changes, and unanticipated colors of lollipop. Let no one call my Cancer a one trick pony!

But on the flip side, Cancer loves like no other. All that irrational emotion isn’t limited to distracting outbursts: he’s the kid who wants to snuggle together to read a book, who kisses and hugs whoever’s in the room when he goes to bed at night, who says “you’re the best mom, Mom” and not just because he wants me to buy him something.

I realize this is a very rose-colored-glasses view of him, and I’m aware Cancer may actually be a devious monster who knows that if he tells me he loves me today that I’m more likely to buy him stuff he doesn’t even know he wants yet, but I like to believe the best about him.

Positivity is important, after all…

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