Wednesday, July 08, 2015


i don’t remember acknowledging a birthday less than i acknowledged this one. or maybe didn’t acknowledge it. there were no parties nor dinners with friends, their treat, no hangovers nor forced, week-long, self-indulgent celebrations. the day arrived quickly, quietly, and left just as unassumingly, made special only by the evening massage Warren had scheduled for me.  
of course, i blame the lack of fanfare entirely on my son, whose nickname lately has been “buzzkiller.” not that i mind the diversion. at 39, i think it’s time to put away the titty tops and hangovers. i don’t want to be That Woman of a Certain Age slurring her words and hanging off a barstool. 

i prefer a good night’s sleep instead, welcome at any age, though in short supply for me lately. and herein lies my complete transformation into a Parent with a capital P, sleep deprived and whining about it on the internet.

though i’m sure i would be whining much more on this birthday if it had arrived without a crying baby and snoring husband disturbing my sleep. i feel as though the universe has done me a solid by throwing both at me right before i turn 40 to not only help me solidify my future, but also prevent any embarrassing blog posts lamenting my status as the Unlucky in Love Girl destined for a life of barrenness. good looking out, universe. 

this year, i feel my usual gratitude for my many blessings, but i also feel an underlying anxiety i have never before known. friends have told me recently that i’m “living the dream” and “have it all,” as though i’ve reached some celebrated finish line where i can finally rest easy with the knowledge that all the hard work is behind me. 

but i feel like my work is just about to begin. suddenly, i have a lot to lose. i now have to figure out how to nurture the two most important relationships in my life. and i’ll tell you a little secret, internet, this terrifies me.

i’m sure i’m not alone in my terror. i know that every new parent before me has developed the same awful awareness that every decision we make can ricochet in numerous, unpredictable ways. add to this the decisions involved in being someone’s wife and i’m made doubly uneasy. worst yet is that my current role as my boy’s faithful cow prevents me from drinking vodka to take the edge off.

to steady my blood pressure, i’ve been having many silent conversations with myself (more like lectures). i tell myself to calm my runaway imagination, to be reactive not reactionary, to stay grounded in logic and reality. and the reality is that were ok, were fine. that’s what i keep telling myself in those moments of needless panic, when the anxiety bubbles out of my brain and paralyzes my entire body. we’re ok, we’re fine. just keep working on it.

in those quiet moments at 3am when i nurse my son in his room, his fragile body pressed into mine, his warm breath landing against my skin, i’m working on it. and when i return to bed to lie next to my sleeping husband, his outline barely perceptible in the darkened room, i’m working on it. my world in those two bodies, so irrecoverably intertwined with the fiber of my being, yet somehow still not close enough to offer constant protection. 

i know i need to relax. i know i need to let go of the things i can’t control and trust life to take care of me in the way it always has in the past.   

i’m working on it.     

1 comment:

Cassie said...

Dude you have kicked every life change in the face. You have lived every stage to the fullest, higher and lows. You will rock this stage as well. I look forward to following it all....