It's 11pm on a Wednesday night. You and I are in a Hampton Inn in Covington Georgia. Business travel. These are the places my job takes us. It's September 11th. 11 years after all that awfulness happened. I could write about what I was doing 11 years ago when I lived in New York, but that's not what's on my mind tonight. Instead I have a confession to make and it feels terrible.
Fact: As of today, I don't really feel bonded to you yet. I mean I like the idea of you, but that is all you seem to be. Maybe the problem is that I don't feel I've got proof that you're real. I mean, of course I've got proof. I've seen something on a distorted screen at the doctor's office that they say is you. I've seen your little hands and what they say are your legs. And I have visible proof that you're there now, because we're at a point where complete strangers are asking me how far along I am (no denial here). But still, I feel like I'm waiting for proof. This could all be some grand illusion.
Maybe it's because the last babies were.
Maybe the first time I feel you move a light will go on for me. Or maybe it will be when I learn whether you are a he or she. I've been told that for some people it isn't until much much later that they feel a connection. Maybe it won't be until I hold you in my arms and sniff your little head that you feel real to me.
But as of now, in my head I can't quite wrap my thoughts around the fact that you are a little person. I try to talk to you but it feels silly and it doesn't stick. And as guilty as I feel about it, as of now this pregnancy has just been something that is happening TO me. So far in my head it's all been in terms of me. Me me me. I am barfy. I am getting fat. I don't fit into my clothes. I am gonna be leaving work for a few months.
Some day I will wish that I could take you with me on awful business trips like this. Some day, when I actually know you, when I love you more than I ever thought it possible to love a person, I will feel sad for all these days I spent with you so close to me when I didn't feel anything. And then I will wish to go back in time to right now, when I'm sitting on this bed in a quiet hotel room and straining to tell the difference between you and normal digestive tract things.