Fruitful: The Quiet

Nicole has gone to sleep.  It's a Wednesday night as I write this (a "school night," as we call them) and I'm sitting here, drinking some Macallan, working on my second YA book, listening to The National, and enjoying the quiet.

These are the moments that I will no doubt miss the most after our child is born.

I'm sure there will be a million new and different moments to replace it, but even if those moments are better, they won't be the same.

I require a lot of alone time.  Nicole, god bless her, is aware of this fact and has never made it an issue.  We have an understanding, you might say.  I think I've gotten better about it over the years, but it's still there.

This alone time often comes late at night, while Nicole is in bed reading or has fallen asleep.  It comes as I described it above, sitting at my desk, attempting to write, surfing the internet, drinking whiskey, and listening to my music.  It is, in many ways, where I feel the most at peace.

So what happens when that goes away?

It's not going to be an overt problem.  The other day, Nicole mentioned how she feels like she's been crabby a lot.  I pointed out that she's pregnant and we have a lot of balls in the air right now, so it's justifiable that she should be a bit grumpy now and again.  And I told her that she's only really crabby in comparison to me, because I'm not really a crabby kind of guy.  I told her I would be crabby more often if I actually possessed the ability to process my emotions as they happened.

Perhaps it's the Midwest in me, but I don't "feel my feelings" (as JD said to Turk) until days later, at which point I explode.  Actually, that's an overstatement.  I seldom explode anymore.  I more just get annoyed by everything and pout.  Not ideal, I know, but better than exploding.

I worry that I won't realize how badly I miss the quiet until it's been gone for some time.  I worry that the
emotional toil on the newborn chaos that is coming to our lives is going to hide until the least opportune moment to pop out.

I'm not concerned about putting my child first.  I'm shockingly selfless when I want to be (emphasis on that last part).  But as with all things I go to the extreme and it's entirely possible that I will lose myself in this kid.  And that's not fair to anyone.

It's funny: my worst traits tend to come out when I have to wait for something.  I'm neurotic and impatient, which means I am not just frustrated by the waiting, but I'm also thinking of all sorts of horrible things in the meantime.  Honest to god, I can do almost anything if I'm forced to do it on the spot.  Give me any time to think about it, and I'll shit myself.

It's strange to be impatient for something, yet terrified of its arrival at the same time.

Time to go back to enjoying the quiet; I don't have many more of these nights left.

Week 26!