Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine's Day, 1996

It seems to me I'm always mentioning how I find treasures rifling through drawers and files while I'm looking for something else. Today's tale is no different, except I don't recall that I was particularly looking for anything.  I just recently stumbled across the little card I used to tell Tom I was pregnant with Agent 96 on Valentine's Day, 1996. And even with the evidence in my hand, including the positive pregnancy test, which today still shows the [+] (and no, I'm not going to show you a picture of it!), I honestly have no recollection of doing this. I recall the card; in fact, when I was putting together photos for his memorial I wanted to include the card, a small, die-cut tiger.  A little secret between us was that I called him "Tiger", and he called me "Kitten". Eww, I know. What worse, when 96 was born, we called him "Tigger" sometimes. (Remember that rattle Zoet chewed up? It was 96's Tigger.)

Quick, get the insulin.

I remember giving him the card for Valentine's Day in 1996, I just don't recall the whole "I'm having a baby" spin.  How does a person forget something like that?

Usually, events with the second child take a back seat to the first: 96's baby book is complete, including the first day he sat, unaided, in a grocery cart (5 months) and his first fat lip (during the April Fool's Day blizzard in 1997); I sold 98's baby book in a yard sale, factory seal unbroken. The photos in 96's first year album are labeled; I don't even have a first-year album for 98. Of course, I famously have both boys' umbilical stumps in a carton in the attic. They are in the jeweler's boxes my engagement ring and wedding band came in.  Suffice it to say, saving those little belly buttons had me off raisins for a while.

Back to Agent 98. It's hard to imagine a memory burned more strongly into my synapses:. There I was, 40 years old, in the upstairs bathroom: 6-month-old 96 (who was still nursing full time, for the record) in one arm, and there, in my other hand, another [+].

"Tom ... can you come up here for a sec?"

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