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Nov 13, 2009


Last night, after an evening of chasing Colin around the house while he toddled as fast as his little feet would take him, getting into every drawer, cabinet, and shelf, as toddlers are wont to do, I decided that I’d had enough. Up to that point, we’d tried to avoid “baby-fying” our house as much as possible, attempting to contain toys out of sight and staying clear of baby gates and the like. Last night, I threw in the towel. The time had come for baby gates, as I and Patrick are too tired to chase after that child all over the house. We grew up in playpens. The least Colin could do for us is to stay confined in the kitchen and den.

So, naturally, I went to Target, the place from which all things come. I’ve looked at and priced gates before, but last night was the night and I was planning to buy whatever they had. Two of them, actually. Target just before closing is always an interesting mix of people, mostly college and grad school age people and a few harried looking members of the parenting community. I find myself oddly torn between these two groups, enviously looking at the well-rested and fashionable among us as I try to hide my unwashed hair and dark circles under my eyes.

I used to fall squarely in that more youthful category, you know. It wasn’t that long ago that I would run to Target for art supplies at 9pm, having been inspired to create a homemade card or gift, or for a picture frame or a necklace or a new handbag. Now, I run to Target for diapers and milk and, presently, baby gates. But I still long to be associated with that young, hip crew.

I found the baby gates I needed, two of them, and simply felt altogether old and frumpy. I had come in work clothes, I could feel that my face looked tired, my hair hung limp and dirty on my shoulders. I felt worn out. And so, like any reasonable woman, I decided that what I needed to perk me up was some new undies. There is no better way to give a woman a boost than to slip into a pair of cute, fresh, new unmentionables, I think, and so I pointed my baby gate-laden cart in the direction of the lingerie section.

Ah, what luck! A sale, even! I rifled through the various patterns and styles looking for my size and pieces that I liked. There were several that caught my eye, some sweet, some sassy, some even a little naughty. I was feeling like myself again. I was standing up straighter and felt a lightness in my presence that was refreshing and very pleasant.

At that moment, a lovely young man turned the corner. Lovely, I mean to tell you. I looked up and met his eyes, dark eyes with dark hair, my favorite. I felt my face get hot. His lips twitched into a half smile. I glanced down and back up. Classic attraction body language. My self esteem sky-rocketed.

Until I caught his next move. His gaze, intense and intrigued, swept over the contents of my cart.

Size 5 diapers. Target brand baby wipes. 2 different baby gates. An 18 month sized hoodie. Outlet covers. Whole milk.

He looked back at me, his face wiped of the curiosity from a moment before, replaced instead with a distance, a back-wheeling. I tried to arrange my face in a pleasant sort of way, but was actually horrified. Does it get any more pathetic than a woman whose cart is full of baby supplies to be holding a little black lacy thing with a desperation stamped on her forehead?

Let me tell you, the answer is no.

I kept the cotton ones with cute prints, the ones that I thought would be cute and fun but also practical and comfortable but I left the black lacy things for the young, hipster kids and I went home to my life, my books, my boys. I was never really that girl anyway, to be truthful.

3 Readers rock!:

barrie said...

Oh, but new mom/doctors-to-be need naughty black lace thongs too!!!

tracy said...

Yep, get them! Besides, you'll be a doctor, for crying out loud and that beats anything in earth!

Leonore said...

Hi Katie - I know you guys are incredibly busy and I hate to bother you, but could you drop me a note or call me? Laevigata @ hotmail . com or 505-286-0065 (or, Peter has my cell #). I tried sending you an e-mail at neverknoweverything@gmail.com but it looks like it didn't go through. We are going to be in Indy for a couple of hours on 12/17 and need a dog-friendly place to meet up with someone. Thanks!!!!! - Leonore Abordo