I met my friend Lindsay on the first day of law school, and she’s been a big part of my life for the better part of a decade. I didn’t know her when I was a child, but that’s not to say that I haven’t grown up with her. In the last eight years, we’ve taken bar exams together, been through three pregnancies together, gotten married (her), started our careers, and settled into our 30s. I started this blog after she sent an email, detailing the reasons why I should do it.
She has seen me through difficult times, like when I was pregnant with Finn as a 3L and had to carry my books in a wheeled backpack around campus to keep weight off my back. She only made fun of me 50% of the time, which was 100% less than my other wretched friends. For those who haven’t been to grad school in recent years, the wheelie bag is a surer road to social ostracization than having B.O. or facial hair as a woman. If Linds had gotten a wheelie bag in law school, I’m sure I would have been as supportive, just not from any closer than ten feet behind her.
She took Finn when he was three months old so that Tom and I could get away, and didn’t call us screaming when he vomited milk all over her in the middle of the night. When she babysat, she would carefully chart Finn’s naps in pink or yellow highlighter on his nap chart as instructed, although she did roll her eyes a bit. She has sucked boogers from my kids’ noses with bulb syringes, whilst gagging. When I showed up on her doorstep at 6:00 AM during a power outage with two gallons of frozen breastmilk in my arms, she made me coffee and cleared out her freezer.
I may have had post-partum depression after my second, Tate, was born, and the situation was made worse by the fact that Tom took a demanding new case the day that Tate was delivered. The paternity leave I’d been promised never materialized, and I went through a rough patch during the time when I was supposed to be happiest. Linds was there with me, checking in every day and talking me through the darkest and loneliest hours. She has seen me at my most vulnerable. I trust her as I trust few others.
So today, on the day that she is leaving her cherubic four-month old son behind and returning to work, I am writing her this post. To tell her that she will be ok, that her baby will not forget about her, and that he will be greatly entertained by all the new faces at daycare. That in sharing him with others, she is introducing Ford to all the love and care that will come to him in this world. That in the four months that she’s been a mom, it’s become obvious to everyone around her that she is a natural; that she makes motherhood look like a state of grace.
But mostly, I’m writing this post to tell her that my heart breaks for her, that I understand, and that it gets better.
photo, Grant Us the Luxury