Sunday, April 13, 2008

I know

I haven't mentioned the sad fact that it wasn't until February, when I went to vote at the church a few blocks away, that I learned our neighbor and his girlfriend were expecting a baby...due in April.

He and I were in line to vote in the primaries, so I turned to him and remarked on a cool scene a few nights prior, when I glanced through our side doors straight into one of their bedrooms and noticed his silhouette, backlit in a beautiful blue light. I quickly realized the unusual glow came from him, up late painting the room a serene cornflower hue. He smiled. "You know why, right? We're expecting a little one."

But I didn't know. Partially because our habits don't mesh--I rise early, leave early, come home in the evening and start tending to children. He is in a rockabilly band and they seem more nocturnal: up late at night, up late in the morning. Maybe once a week we see each other, coming and going, waving from car windows. It's quite possible that my husband spotted our neighbor's girlfriend, quite pregnant, at one of these moments. But no, sadly, I didn't know they were having a baby.

But yesterday I noticed that her Honda was missing...for most of the weekend. I bet she's having that baby, I thought, excited, sorry that we hadn't offered to take care of their dog.

Lo and behold, his parents pulled up in the afternoon, flower bouquets in hand, to report the two-weeks-early broken waters, the labor that didn't progress, the C-section that ensued, and the healthy, just-short-of-eight-pound baby boy born Wednesday morning. The new family was on its way home from the hospital behind them.

I couldn't help watching through the window. I've been through two Cesarean sections. When it's not what you planned for, when it's your first, it's exhausting.

And then there's that drive home from the hospital, when you are sitting in the backseat (which is weird enough, already) next to Your Child, and the world outside is going on as normal, as if no one completely understands that your world has been completely, irrevocably ROCKED. That nothing for you is the same and everything looks so different and everybody else looks so...carefree.

Which is why, when they parked outside their house, and she got out of the car, I looked at her, tears streaming down her face, and I just said, I know. I know, sister. I know.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Brings tears to my eyes. I do hope you have a book in you, somewhere. Thank you for that.