May 11th, 2006

It’s an overcast Tuesday, and I’ve spent the past two hours absorbed in my morning routine: sitting cross-legged on the couch in my pajamas plugging away on a laptop that teeters precariously across my ankles. Standing up to stretch, I head to the next step in the day: chug coffee, shower and dress before returning to the couch and resuming laptop plugging. As I step into the tub, the bathroom door opens slowly – it’s either Cat, whose odd obsession with running water leads her to sneak into the bathroom and nearly leap into the shower some mornings, or Boyfriend stumbling out of bed. I rub my eyes, raw and swollen from excessive computer radiation, and reach for the shampoo. Suddenly I see a hand pulling back the curtain and Boyfriend’s head appearing in the gap, his face wearing a quizzical expression.

“Hey,” he says. “I was just wondering, I mean, don’t take this the wrong way. But when exactly are you going to want to have children?”

I stare blankly, water streaming down my face. “What?”

“You know, babies. When do you think you’ll want to get pregnant?”

“You want an exact date?”

“I was thinking more like a rough estimate.”

“You want to know when I want to start having babies. At nine o’clock on a Tuesday morning.”

“Yup, that pretty much sums it up.”

I replace the shampoo and turn to face him, managing not to fall and crack my head on the slippery tile in the process. “I don’t know. I guess in around five years.”

“Five years??” His tone is incredulous.

“Yes Boyfriend. In five years I’ll be 32. That’s not an unreasonable time to start thinking about babies. And we both know how old you’ll be.”

He grimaces. Five years will bring a benchmark birthday that few thirtysomethings like to think about.

“I guess so. Five years just isn’t that long though.”

“Hey, tell me about it.

He looks pensive for a moment, then nods. “Ok. Five years it is. Got it.”

“Are you going to put it in your daily planner?”

“Ha ha, wiseass. I’m going back to sleep.”

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