A couple of days ago, I found out about Julie's remarkable crash-landing into motherhood. It colored my whole day, a surreal chiaroscuro of past (dark storm-grays), present (delicate infant pastels) and future (bright Playskool primaries).
I have never been so happy for someone I've never met. Her road to motherhood--no, her boulder-strewn, all-uphill climb to motherhood--is one of the most engrossing, amusing, unfair, heart-rending stories I've ever read. And the best part is, I don't have to close the book with a final bittersweet sigh, wishing for just one more chapter, one more glimpse into the author's bent mind. I just need a little patience, which is easy when one knows that the reward--in this case, a new post--is surely right around the corner. And I wonder, with eager anticipation, what new dimensions motherhood, in all its gore and wonder, will add to Julie's story.
Selfishly, I also wonder whether I will feel just a little more isolated, a little more removed from The Next Step. I am still in the blocks while so many are sprinting down the track. A few, like Julie, have even gotten to the finish line, and are embarking on the incredible endurance race of parenting. I can hardly even imagine the finish line: I don't let myself think on it too often, fearing it might make my unfailingly predictable cycles of want, hope and bitter let-down that much harder to bear. I'm so far away from it that I think just a few yards ahead, my immediate goal no more advanced than a second pink line, a tiny few hurtling steps down the track.
But my imaginings for everyone else? Ahh, for them I can picture every inch of the race, flags waving, trumpets blaring, all shiny-gold and gleaming, and cheer till I'm hoarse.