Some introductions are in order:
In September 2002, Mom101 was Single Thirty-Something Girl505. The Carrie Bradshaw comparisons not withstanding, I was a freelance copywriter in the big city with a wallet full of Barneys receipts and a spate of hiLARious match.com stories. I was on a much-needed hiatus from my Prada-mandatory advertising job, writing allergy medicine ads to pay the bills, co-authoring a book, and dabbling in improv comedy at UCB theater.
Nate was the cute geeky guy in my Level 3 class–grandpa eyeglasses, spiky hair bleached at the tips, faded tribal armband that he swears he had a full year before it became the tattoo of choice of frat boys everywhere. He overlooked my many failed attempts to be funny on cue, and I overlooked the fact that he was slumming it on Avenue C with three roommates and no health insurance. Also, he was 8 years younger. Also, he stared at my boobs a lot. Nate walked me to a cab one night after a few rounds of after-class mojitos. He watched us pull away up Essex Street when the driver, like a character out of a bad romantic comedy, said with great authority, “he is the one.”
“But he didn’t even kiss me!”
“That,” the driver responded, “is how I know he is the one.”
By February we got a dog. By June we were living in Brooklyn.
On October 10, 2004, a determined sperm collided with a surprisingly fertile egg. Both parents, I am pleased to report, were surprised and delighted. I spent the next nine months morphing from Relatively Cute Skinny Girl to “Dear God, What is That Thing?” (With apologies to William Goldman.) The doctor-ordered bedrest was almost entirely to blame, but I must give a little credit to the batallion of empty navy blue boxes in my trashcan, each dusted with that telltale neon orange powder. And to some degree I think it was a bit of karmic irony: easy conception, tough pregnancy. Pay me now or pay me later.
Mild depression coupled with the standard hormonal dementia managed to transform my pregnancy into a creative black hole. It’s amazing how a former go-getter can spend the better part of nine months doing nothing but researching crib bumpers, comparing diaper rash creams, and trading snark with anonymous strangers on mommy message boards. I’ve got the permanent PowerBook crease in my thighs to prove it.
It was a long, long, 41.5 weeks. But emerging from the haze I realized I was no longer Single Thirty-Something Girl505. I knew the difference between Weissbluth and Ferber! I had credentials!
Nate wanted to name her Gibson, for Joe, the coach of the Washington Redskins. We agreed on Thalia, for the Greek Muse of comedy.
She was born on July 6, six perfect pounds, eleven perfect ounces. I’m in love. But I would like her to sleep a little more.