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When Are We, Again?

Photo by Lexi Walters Wright

27w1d - Time is doing this taffy-pull maneuver these days. Some evenings, reading in front of the fire, I'll think of something that we need to get settled before Tertiary arrives—schedule The Vaccine Talk with our pediatrician, for example, or finalize our decision on a white noise machine—and I'll flounder from the couch to add it to my Tasks list on my GCalendar. Then I'll notice that there are more items on my to-do than there are days left before this babe comes flailing into the world, and I snap my laptop closed as if any more time spent looking at the list would somehow lengthen it instantaneously and swallow up our remaining kid-free days.

Wasn't I just complaining about progesterone suppository stains and veggie aversions? Can we really be only three months away?

A golden friend whom I've treasured for 13 years came to visit this weekend, and we spent serious hours looking through thousands of photos I organized this summer. Back in July, it had been an exercise out of desperation, intended to prove to myself just how full my life was without a child: Despite our two losses in the year prior, I still had a lifetime of experiences (and funny/ raucous/ poignant photos that captured them) to hang my self-worthiness hat on. Then, poring over the visual artifacts of my past had soothed my inflamed heart, leaving me steady and stable enough to begin to envision, again, a different future. Maybe with a baby, if we could stand to try again. Maybe just different entirely, in ways we could not yet envision.

This weekend, though, the albums felt more like milemarkers: This is what things were like decades before The Mister and I became parents. This is how we looked. This is what we did. This is how and who we loved, and how we came to be the us we are right now, as we're preparing to embark on the next billion or so miles to come, with someone new riding along. 

My visiting friend surprised me with tickets for us to see the reunion show of a band we'd loved in high school and college. Back then, we'd drive two, three hours to see them play, dance for a couple hours, refuel, and head home as the skies over the Midwest school we went to broke into the first jags of early-morning light. Now, I was calling around for last-minute chain hotel reservations in a city less than 70 miles from me, knowing there wasn't a snowball's chance that I'd be able to stay up (let alone stay standing) past midnight and then get us home without stopping to nap, pee, stretch, and whine, each repeatedly.

But I booked, and we went. And apparently, I'm not the only one feeling the long tail of time whipping around these days: The band was selling logo onesies alongside their typical concert Ts and re-issued vinyl. My friend bought me one, for posterity.

I chose it in size 6 to 12 months—because I can't imagine we'll ever have a baby that old.

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