This body.

This body.

It’s amazing to me that when our bodies work the best

When we’re young

The muscles and sinews and fascia all flexible, fluid

We don’t realize it, appreciate it, yearn for it.

For the ease

Having muscle memory that remembers

Like riding a bike, throwing a pitch, ascending stairs, even, standing up

I remember being little, 8 years old

My mom’s “over the hill” birthday party

I delighted in black decorations, everywhere, black napkins, crepe papers, balloons

Black felt so…scandalous, ominous, powerful, maybe even 

She was turning 40

The same age I am now

She had 3 children already well into our gradeschool years, tied up in sports and digging in the backyard and riding bikes to the country fort we had erected from fallen branches and dead things, all our bodies doing the things that young bodies do

So able, so free

Mom too

I wonder how much she thought about her body then

Because it’s all I can think about now

What it can do, what it cannot do, what takes work to do

Burns and scars and tightened chests from a round or two of cancer

Wondering how much of what I feel is about aging and how much of it is about how my life was interrupted, keeps being interrupted until the interruption becomes the norm

This body. Not carrying our child.

Wondering when it arrives come July, if my body will know it, if these arms are strong enough to do what a mom does for a baby

if my DNA will see itself reflected 

and if the muscle of my heart – still weak from chemotherapy – will expand in new directions 

Will it remember what to do, what it never thought it could or would do

To welcome this new body into being.

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