Monday, May 08, 2006

prom redux

This weekend was good. After all the drama and tears of the week we felt it best to just get the hell out of Dodge, so we headed up to Loveland, even though my MIL is in Jersey. We saw my parents and their new house, which is coming along nicely. It is house-shaped with siding and brick on the front and drywall and paint on the walls on the inside. (the last time we saw it none of this had occurred yet, so for us it was really cool to see.) My mother is so excited that she's a little beside herself with joy. She called me the other day just to tell me her new phone number.

We also went out for dinner for our birthdays--Mr. Bump's is May 10th, mine is May 14th--over the weekend.

As I have mentioned in another post, it seems to be prom season here. It seems a strange reminder of a former version of myself when every restaurant I go to (even Walrus' Ice Cream Parlour) is filled with geeky, awkward glasses-faced and acne strewn boys, not to mention girls in strapless gowns, hair teased and sprayed into a gravity-defying still lifes, corsages strapped to their wrists like enormous perfumed time pieces, gnawing on a wads of gum like holsteins on cud. I think about that time in my own life, the specialness of it, the uncertainty, the feeling of everything new, first time and shiny. Where staying out until dawn is like playing beat the clock, like winning some game or graduating to a new adult life. Where your heart beats against the tangle of that big hair coming down, makeup smeared against some boy, legs wound together. And all that trying. All that potential energy, just waiting to happen.

On Saturday night I wanted to wear my jeans under my dress, rather than just the knee length dress. I wanted to dress down the outfit, rather than up. (BTW, it was cool, it looked good.) Mr. Bump wanted me to wear it without the jeans, and since he looked so nice and he asked so nice, I went with dress without jeans. But grudgingly. My mother had dressed up but at the last minute run out in her tennis shoes to shut the animals in for the night. She was in such a hurry that after that she forgot to take off her socks and tennis shoes and slip back into her flats. A younger version of me would have been so mortified by this error, but when she discovered it (as she stepped out of the car to go in to the restaurant), we all just laughed and headed on in. My father flirted (as he always does) with the young woman who filled our water and cleared our plates, and again, this would have sent the teenage me into paroxysms of embarrassement. But now I just try to make a joke, release her from his grasp so she could move on, and engage him in other conversation. Later at the ice cream parlour we watched a little blue eyed, curly-headed boy lose it after his ice cream disappeared (whether in his mouth or on the floor it was never determined). I didn't grimace at the thought of someday having to comfort someone for a similar slight. (Don't get me wrong, I don't exactly want to yet, either.)

Today I'm (almost) 32, I have a grown up job, I'm making grown-up money, I have a grown-up mortgage. I hardly ever chew gum, and never like a ruminant. There are moments, evenings, occasions that are special, but so much of everything is still uncertain. These days beating the clock has more to do with fertility than curfew. But lucky me, my heart still beats hard against my very own boy, my Mr. Bump. I am so grateful to be past all that trying. I would not change places with those shiny gum-chewing girls for anything. In much the same way as I felt back then, I can't wait to see what happens next.

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