This is the latest installment of The Growing Season by Stephanie Phillips. For previous entries, click here.
The next few weeks pass uneventfully as the baby and my belly grow, a few OB and ultrasound appointments show mild but not alarming thinning of my cervix, and Mirabelle and I both plant seed and transplant flowers in the garden after the last frost. Because of the fact that we have plants at different stages of growth, we’ll be able to enjoy blooming around the garden for weeks at a time. I think about the seeds that are just beginning their journey, relying on the nutrients in the soil and their present darkness to begin new life; then I consider the plants that have been around for awhile longer, all leaves and branches now, that will depend on air and water and light to continue growing as they have moved from pot to ground. There are endless ways to grow and keep growing, yet all of them involve getting messy in the dirt.
Sarah and I have been in touch, and after Jack and I consulted our insurance company and she got an estimate for the damage I caused, we decided to pay for the repairs ourselves. Which means, of course, Jack paying for it himself, though you would never know it wasn’t a joint responsibility—he’s far more gracious than I imagine I would be in the situation, and the only suggestion he gives is that I avoid parking in tight spaces for awhile.
Sarah and I meet for lunch one day after she’s gotten the car fixed, and I’m ready to move on to conversations that don’t involve body work accomplished on my behalf. We’re at a nearby café that has outdoor seating, and the weather is perfect for it. She pulls Sam in his stroller up to the table to make it a party of three.
“The amount of legwork involved in just getting around with a new baby amazes me,” I marvel to her. How did you learn how to work all that gear? The car seat and stroller and all of it.”
She laughs. “Oh, trust me—four months ago I didn’t know the first thing about any of this stuff,” she assures me. “You get the hang of it pretty quickly. You learn the car seat management when you’re leaving the hospital, then you don’t go anywhere for several weeks, and then you’re so crazy to leave the house that learning stroller mechanics is almost a joy. You do it all a couple of times and you’re an expert.”
I shake my head. “There’s just so much to remember,” I lament. “And I can barely back out of a parking space.” Continue reading