Today is Sunday, July 8, 2012. Today is your due date. Today is the day when our childhood escapes our grasps and floats into the true adulthood we’ve dreaded, craved, and envisioned for years. I texted you yesterday and all there was were cramps and a last minute grocery trip to stock the cabinets and fridge. Your little newborn clothes have been washed, dried, and folded neatly into drawers for weeks. The bottles are cleaned. Diapers stacked. Her name delicately displayed on her nursery wall, waiting to be revealed. I got your mom’s cell number for hospital updates through the hours of labor and, of course, when your sweet baby girl enters the world for her first breath and your first motherly-adoring tears.
I’ve prepared all I can as your best friend, so have you and Scott, your supportive husband of thirteen months and confidant for years. Your mom is probably on pins and needles, jumping up at every phone call that rings any phone line. Your dad’s on call too. It’s their baby’s due date. “Any day now,” we have said all week and now it’s “any minute now”. You say, “I’m ready to meet this little girl!” with that soft voice that I’ve known since middle school. That little girl already adores you just as much as Scott does. I can’t wait to enter that hospital room and look at my best friend, a mommy, holding her daughter.
Best friend status has always made me a part of your family and I can’t control my excitement and anticipation all at once. I feel as if my sister is having my niece “any minute now”. We texted yesterday like I mentioned above, but today I text and ring you and there’s no answer. My immediate thought is: “It’s time!” but then I remember you said you’d call me. I keep texting silly things to you like how I’m playing old CDs I found from our high school years like Michelle Branch and Eminem and Vanessa Carlton and Creed and… and… and… ARE YOU OKAY!?! That’s all I can think about. I’m about to text Scott, but I’m picturing you two having a final couple’s day, relaxing on the couch, thinking about how you’ve imagined this milestone for so long. Or something’s a stirring and you just want to know for sure before all excitement breaks loose.
I’m sure you’re just fine. So I’ll continue… I’m so distracted! <— Crazy.
So I’ve been telling you about all the dreams I’ve been having. I had one where Little Miss came out walking, which I interpreted as evidence she’ll be an overachiever and brilliant. Then there was one where I looked at her and she was dressed in boy clothes, where then I freaked out and rushed to Target to buy boy things because SURPRISE, she’s a boy! AH! I just interpret that as a typical baby dream. Or I’m clearly insane. In another dream you named her a name I hadn’t planned on and so was confused on the letters hanging in her bedroom that read a different name. Ever had a dream panic attack?
And then last night, more likely early this morning about 6-7 a.m., I had a dream where I was at my mom’s house and you, and Scott came barreling into my driveway. You rang my doorbell and I answered barefoot and in a red summer dress — the sun was shining the brightest — and you said very excited but calm at the same time, “I’m in labor, let’s go!” to which I jumped through the threshold of my childhood house. I left without shoes and joined you in the backseat. You showed me her foot imprint on your tummy and I cooed on cue. And then… I woke up.
So I think you’re having her. Or my subconscious is having a baby. Or my subconscious has told me you’re having her. Or you could be sitting at home chilling out eating a snack.
I’m a jumping bean. I’m crying at every little memory that spits from my brain. I’m writing Little Miss her arrival letter soon and I can’t even start it without tissuing my eyes. Hello. My name is Jennifer Dryden and my best friend’s nine months pregnant today and I’m so excited I might as well be on top of the world screaming it. (Wait, I sort of am.)
I hope at the end of the day or the next few days I can hold Little Miss and whisper, “Hello. I’m your Auntie Jennifer and I’m going to love you forever.”