I’d never held a newborn baby before. Maybe that was my first mistake. I didn’t know what I was going to be up against. I didn’t know what I was in for. It wasn’t like I thought this would happen. It wasn’t as if I expected to feel this way. We all know where my head is at as far as babies are concerned.
So I went to see the baby on her second day of life. And I held her. She’s very soft and very small, two things one knows about babies but can’t really understand until you hold one. She has a full head of black hair, and her arms are constantly moving around, conducting a tiny song, wondering what happened to the walls of her house. Her legs kick out strong. She has a wicked naval piercing — a large plastic stick that’s bigger than most of her body parts. She’s still trying to figure out what her tongue is for.
I probably only held her for fifteen minutes or so. I was pretty nervous, as the only other time I’ve held something even close to being that young I dropped the baby on her head. Now, I was six and the baby was one, but I dropped the baby on her head and I’ve never forgotten that, so I stayed pretty still as this newborn was placed into my arms.
It’s been one of those days where I haven’t really had time to stop and eat, much less take a moment to collect myself. I haven’t even eaten dinner yet and my day isn’t finished, but I’ve had such a big day that I want to write it all down before I possibly forget anything.
I drove over 75 miles today running errands, taking meetings, picking up friends at the airport. I wore my cellphone down to the last battery pulse talking to friends all over the country. I’ve made plans and discussed memories, I’ve discussed religion while eating stalks of celery. I told my life story twice and met new people and sat in a soundproof room that probably was just used for very important people.
I’m exhausted. It’s been a busy week full of meetings, rehearsals, performances, planning, writing, rewriting, contracts, phone calls, cleaning and meeting deadlines. In fact, yesterday was going to be my “light” day, and I filled it with research and a marathon cleaning session, as the state of my house was so out of control that tiny cats were threatening to sprout from the piles of wandering furballs that would roll through the house like tumbleweeds.
And last night as I scarfed down dinner minutes before I had to head out the door for a friend’s screening, I got the phone call we’d been waiting on for a while: two of my best friends in the world are finally having a baby. They’d been trying forever, it seems, and they’re very happy to be one month along. They keep repeating that they know they aren’t “out of the woods,” which only strengthens that myth of storks leaving babies in gardens and cabbage patches way out in the middle of nowhere (or “the nowhere”, as my newly-pregnant friend was mocked for saying). I always imagined mothers crawling through thorny vines and poison ivy, shielding their tiny infants in their hands, both faces streaked in mud until they both found a warm home. So really, finding out when I was six that I instead came from a belly was a relief.
the whispering ovaries
So, this has never happened before.
This weekend I bonded with a baby.
Like a baby baby, which, again, is quite new for me.
but i’m still taking my pills
I was driving home from work yesterday when I saw a man in the far right lane of the highway riding a motorcycle without a helmet talking on his cell phone. It made me laugh. I guess I laughed because I initially thought, “How dangerous is that?” and then I was immediately trying to figure out what he must be discussing on his phone:
“No! I think I’m lost! Didn’t you say the Puff Daddy video was being shot in Austin? I’m just driving around this highway and it doesn’t look blocked off to me. Where’s Mariah? What? Austin! Austin! What? BOSton? I’m supposed to be in Boston? Shit.”
Last night. Eric is at the door, putting his wallet in his pocket, waiting for pamie to get off the couch so they can go eat dinner.