My heart pumps blood quickly and my throat clenches.
I feel anxiety at seeing familiar faces, made unfamiliar by lack of recent recognition.
My strong hands shake as I grasp my wheat grass shot; I feel embarrassed by it.
I’m again a new mom, not seeing another adult face besides my husband’s for days. I feel greedy and thirsty and hungry when I’m around others taller than four feet.
Some people seem to snub me; it bothers me, but I ignore it because people are mean.
It’s funny because I love people, but I know, too, that people are not always innately wonderful—more, they are scarred by their own hardships.
Sometimes they are selfish and hard and downright nasty; in accepting this I find the grace in the rest of the population who, like I, tries to be good despite cranky, never-enough-coffee mornings and behind-closed-doors fights.
I sniff and breathe in cold air that doesn’t fit the season. Snow drifts almost angrily outside, and I look over at a small glass of rich red wine next to my elbow.
My heart is slow.
My heart is steady.
My heart is wanting to see the best in people, but ready to see the worst.
I decide to end here, for today.
I decide to end at being potentially snubbed and gawked at when manic-excited to break free from my new-mother (wonderful-yet-contained) chains.
I end at red wine and a husband in a baby carrier, and precious cargo of eldest daughter who hugs my leg while I type.
I end at accepting that my pulse quickens because I want friends and life outside of my tiny little world of home, but I also want where I am right now: this place of quiet solitude where I tell my husband over our wine glasses and olives that “we’re all putting our kids first, and I wouldn’t want to be friends with anyone who wasn’t.”
Photo: Author’s own.