(Doing a pint at Mr. Thomas's Chop House, Manchester, England, 2009).
Sometimes it's hard for me to remember BMH (Before Mary Hadley). But for the first 29 years of my life, she wasn't there. I slept whenever I wanted. I spent money on yarn with abandon. I got to sit around places and drink beer. And yet, somehow, I remember thinking that I was poor. Busy. What a moron.
But now, it's like she's always been there. Part of it is because I love her so much and I can't imagine life without her. But mostly, it's because I am so tired, and she is so needy, that she's wormed her way into the core of my psyche so I can't even sleep a night through without jolting awake because I thought I heard her crying. I think it's in this state of exhaustion induced stupidity that I'll think thoughts like, "Where was MH when we went to England? Did my mom watch her?" Only to then realize that we went a year before she was even conceived.
And now, we're doing it again. I've mentioned it in passing, but I'm 15 weeks pregnant. There's a lot to be excited about, and I'm looking forward to it. But it's also making me a bit nostalgic for right now. Because MH will be an only child for just another five months, and then everything will change. It's good change, but it's also a little bittersweet. She's going to be the kid awkwardly holding the baby in the pictures. Never again will she be the baby.
But then I think about how one day, my kids will (hopefully) be grown up and gone. Their childhoods are finite. And this makes me so excited, both for the next 20 something years, and also that it won't always be like this. At some point, my body will be mine again. My life. I can go back to the BMH time of limitless freedom, where my days are my own. It reminds me of what Homer Simpson said when he had to go live in the nursing home with his dad: "Being old is like being a baby, except you're old enough to appreciate it!" Never again will I make the mistake that I am busy, when I can sit and drink a beer and knit whenever I want.