Sunday, November 05, 2006

Cheese But No Wine

Today was a special day. It is Nicole’s 5th anniversary, which also means our 5 year anniversary is about five months away. Coincidence? Probably not. If she never made that step 5 years ago (and then me, 9 months later) we would probably never be together. When that part of her life ended, our life together began (again, 5 months later). So we will acknowledge this day (and August 28th) forever.

Another cause to celebrate: I am in the 8th week and I am still pregnant (knock on wood). And today our babies officially graduate from “embryos” to “fetuses.” I am still in shock at have to write all that in the plural form. Shocked, but grateful. How could I not be grateful that my dream was answered twice?

It would have been a better day if I still wasn’t fighting this awful cold. The congestion and sore throat and hacking cough and general ennui I can handle; what scares me is the low-grade fever. Apparently, according to the pregnancy experts, I can have 106 fever at eight months and all will be fine. But ten minutes at 102 at eight weeks and you are pretty much guaranteed a m/c or birth defects. Now, my temperature of 99.4 is nowhere near 102, but I still lived in fear that it will go up and up and up. And still fear that maybe it was already that high, at night, in bed, when I was sweating through another sleepless night.

The good news is my fever is down. I still have a slight temperature, but I no longer feel the need to dunk myself in tepid/cold baths to lower it to a fetus-acceptable range. I took some Tylenol and drank some Gatorade and rested like it was my job. I still feel awful, but fortunately I can convalesce another couple of days.

Another cause for celebration: For the first time in three days I left the apartment. We ventured to the Dorothy Parker play/event/fundraiser on Broadway and it was so worth it, even if it sets my sickness back a couple of days. Two hours felt like 20 minutes. The performances and performers were great. Dorothy Parker proved to be timeless, and, once again, I was reminded why I was so obsessed with her for the past decade. And we even had some celebrities in the audience: Barbara Walters (who blinks a lot when she talks) and Tom Brokaw (who is really tall). Luckily (for my neighbors) I managed to cough and sniff and make all sick noises during the extended interludes of clapping and laughing.

And leaving the theater I experienced one of those rare New York moments that makes me love this city. Maybe it’s good that NYC can be such a big, impersonal place, because it makes those occasional touches of kindness so much more poignant. As we waked through the aisles toward to exit, I struggled with my putting on my jacket. I snaked my arm through one sleeve but struggled with the second. Apparently I can’t walk and put on clothes at the same time. The woman behind me, one with whom I had shared a brief debriefing conversation with (pieces we both lamented that should have been included but weren’t) when we first started our exodus, helped me with the other arm. So random, and maybe it is silly to be so touched, but I almost cried. This city (world) is sorely in need of these types of kindnesses from strangers.

And now I am home on my comfy couch and eating cheese (I think cheese of all kinds is my first true craving…fondue is in my very near future, I can feel it) and even though I am sick and tired, I am very content.

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