This weekend, I wrote a short story about an adult woman who cannot keep her foot out of her mouth. I thought I’d share it with you all so you could give me some feedback. Please be kind – this is a first draft.
On April 29, 2011, my mother threw a Royal Wedding party at my parents’ house, full of my mom’s friends, family and tea sandwiches. Oh, and also these:
We ate a ton, drank a bunch of Earl Grey and watched the wedding several hours after it actually happened, as our party was in California and was not set at 4 am in the morning. A good time was had by all.
On February 9, 2013, my mother and my aunt hosted a Valentine’s Tea to benefit a LA-based book donation non-profit. My aunt’s house was full of my aunt’s friends, my mom’s friends, our family and tea sandwiches.
We ate a ton and drank a bunch of Earl Grey (and wine). I had really good time soaking in a bunch of compliments about how thin I was, when in truth I was just wearing a dress for once and people could see how disproportionally small my calves are in relation to the rest of my body.
After eating several mini cupcakes, I rounded a corner into the kitchen to pour myself another (double) glass of wine when I ran into a group of my mother’s friends, all of whom I’d met several times before and all of whom had names I could not remember. (I am excellent with faces, and terrible with names. Does that mean that I’m never really listening?)
The leader of the group said, “And this is Sarah, D’s daughter! Have you all met?”
Everyone with her said in unison, “Yes, at the wedding!” and looked at me expectantly.
I was immediately terrified because I couldn’t remember which of my mother’s friends had attended my wedding nearly three years before (I am terrible with names and actual events), so I put on my game face and said, “Of course! It’s so nice to see you all again.”
Beaming from ear to ear, one of the ladies said, “And now we’ll be there for the baby!” And then everyone laughed.
Having been married for three years, I’ve grown used to having to playfully deflect questions and comments about the state of my uterus. I launched into my usual defense, which amounts mostly to my just throwing my mother under the bus. My mom has been nothing if not totally respectful about my having a baby eventually, but when questioned about it by strangers, it’s easier for me to tow the line and resort to cliches about how everyone around me is desperate for grandchildren than it is for me to be honest and say that I’m not exactly sure if I’m fertile or if having a baby soon is a good idea (nor do I think I should have to be, when all I really want is some more wine and likely, many more cookies). I was just winding up my breathless recitations of all the ways people around me have hinted at babies when one of the woman said,
“Well, actually, we were talking about the Royal Baby.”
It was at this point that I realized I hadn’t met any of them at my wedding. No one cared about my wedding at all. We’d all talked last over tea and scones and finger foods at the viewing of the Royal Wedding. Shockingly, not everything is all about me.
In my abject horror at having just had a completely unprovoked conversation at these women about my family planning, I could not stop talking. In an effort to play off my enormous humiliation, I may have volunteered my mom to host a Royal Baby Shower. Dear Mom, I hope you’re not busy the first week of July, because you might have plans.
Upon escaping the kitchen, I melted into a puddle of shame and disgrace and proceeded to eat my feelings, which tasted like lemon scone and Mexican wedding cookie. At least they were delicious.