January 4, 2007

Not just a river in Egypt

I can't believe it's already 2007.

The last few weeks seem to have flashed by in fast-forward.

Rasbaby's negative-first Christmas.

Boxing Day.

Back to work again, then another long weekend.

I enjoyed my most pleasant New Year's Eve in several years. Even though the bar was excruciatingly low, it was still a good time.

And then, earlier this week, I suddenly realized the holidays were over.

It was just a regular day in January.

I had been using the holidays as a mental buffer between myself and impending parenthood.

Even as I unwrapped the Christmas packages containing burp cloths and onesies, it still seemed somewhat abstract. Sure, that pink hooded towel will someday be wrapped around a baby, but an abstract baby.

A future baby.

A springtime baby.

Along with abstract springtime baby, I had created an image of abstract springtime Monica.

She's serene and peaceful.

She occasionally peeks into her colorful, freshly painted and decorated nursery, just to make sure that every piece in its perfect place.

She has a bag packed for the hospital, and a labor playlist on her MP3 player.

She knows infant CPR, baby sign language, and all the major contemporary philosophies of colic prevention.

She can wrap a baby like a burrito, change a diaper with one hand, and sing a perfect lullaby.

Current Monica doesn't really resemble the abstract springtime ideal.

My "nursery" is currently decorated with black curtains, walls the color of rancid butter, and a loveseat that is, for all intents and purposes, a loveseat-sized cat scratching post.

I've been reading parenting books and magazines, but the prospect of holding an actual baby still strikes a note of terror in my heart.

I sing to my baby sometimes, but it's usually Cyndi Lauper or Coldplay.

Denial is a powerful force.

It's not just a river in Egypt.

I had procrastinated all baby-related preparations until after Christmas - including truly admitting to myself that 90 days from now, there will probably be a new person living in my house.

A whole new person.


I remember sitting in my living room one night in Sepember 2002, talking to Sam.

"Holy #$@!. We're getting married in three weeks."

We hadn't ordered flowers. Sam hadn't looked at tuxes. We were planning a wedding for 130 guests, mostly from out-of-town, and we weren't even sure that the hotel we wanted for the reception was still available. We were supposed to have given them a couple of thousand dollars 90 days before the event, but we forgot. Oops.

Somehow, it all worked out.

No one suspected that our wedding was mostly thrown together at the last minute.

Or if they did, they were too polite to say anything.

Things have a way of working out for me.

I don't think the baby will be an exception.

Sam and I will find a way to prepare the nursery, learn a few things about babies, and shift into parenting mode (whatever that means).

I trust in the universe.

And if the universe fails, both of our mothers are coming to visit us before the baby's due date.

They'll know the answer.

Mothers always do.

No comments: