Miriam N. Kotzin and Bill
I told Christine that she looked great. Sure, she looked tired,
are supposed to lie about stuff like that. Just when I think the
set, she changes them. This smells like a disaster.
“I look terrible,” my wife says. She’s leaning up against the
counter. The fluorescent light doesn’t do her any favors.
Right now is when I should find a good place to hide. I even take a
look around, to see if there’s a way to get out of here and make
good at the same time. But no, the trash is already out, and we
Christine is looking for sympathy, and who can blame her? It’s
been a hot
summer and she’s nearly nine months gone. She’s carrying as
big as though
she's having twins, but the ultrasound says he's one boy.
Christine’s hair is flat and damp. She has pale blue circles
eyes; she hasn’t slept well for weeks. Neither have I.
“You look fine, sweetie.” There should be a law against using
“fine” in these situations. Her eyebrows just went down at
notches. That means that I am either dead, or I will want to be
“I look like a balloon,” she says. “You’ve always been a
Fine is out. She does look like a balloon. Honesty won’t
points here. Not direct honesty, I need a plan.
“It’ll be over soon, sweetie.” There. That’s nice
and safe. Facts are not
in dispute on this one.
“Over? Over? It will just be beginning!" her voice
rose into that register
that reminds me of chalk on a blackboard. "Didn't anyone ever
about midnight feedings?"
"You don't have to breast feed, you know." She's been
going to La Leche
meetings since we set the date for our wedding.
She’s in no mood for consolation. Her brown eyes are staring at
right behind me. I’ll give it one more go.
“Nobody cares how you look, Sweetie.” As soon as it’s out of
my mouth, I
realize what I’ve just said.
Assuming she forgives me, maybe on the next kid I’ll do better.
But if I
don’t get it right soon, Junior’s sure to be an only child.