14. Impatient Gamma

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It’s finally Saturday but instead of sleeping in, I’m being harassed by my phone because my mother won’t stop calling me. Most people would be alarmed if their mother was calling nonstop, but I know that whatever Maria wants, it can wait. I’m almost certain that idiot brother of mine told her that I’m going to be seeing Davinder today, and she’s just being nosey. I haven’t heard from her in a couple days, but all of a sudden, she’s ringing my phone off the hook. It’s barely 7:30 a.m., so there is no reason for her to be contacting me with such vigor, but I might as well get this phone call over with.

Hello, Mother. Do you know what time it is?

“Good morning, my dearest Evening. I didn’t wake you. Did I?”

Of course not, Mom. I was up. I just couldn’t get to my phone any of the 4 previous times you called this morning.

“It’s almost 8 o’clock. You should have been up an hour and a half ago.  I heard from a certain someone that I’m going to be meeting my granddaughter today!”

Wait…What? You’re not meeting her today, Mom.

“Nonsense. I certainly am. Just tell me when and where to be and I’ll be there.”

Mom, no… I’m not doing this with you today. It’s too early for you to meet Davinder. She has no clue that I’m her mother, and I know you’re going to be all giddy and weird when you meet her. I can’t risk it.

“You absolutely must let me meet her today, Evening. I promise I’ll be on my best behavior. I’ve been waiting almost 40 years for this moment. Please!

First of all, I still have several years left before I turn 40. Secondly, I can’t ambush them like that.

“Why not? Have you forgotten all of the illegal activity that led to this particular situation? I’m all for making sure everyone is comfortable, but due to circumstances beyond your control, that’s not really possible, Evening.”

It is possible, Mom. I can’t do that to Davi. I won’t put her in the position of having some strange older woman crying and fawning all over her, and insisting she call her Gamma. Maybe if you were a little less intense, but, that’s not really who you are as a person. Also, she is amazing and I know you won’t be able to help yourself. I could barely contain myself when I met her the other day.

“How do you see this playing out, Evening? I don’t know what kind of scenario you’ve envisioned where the truth is not going to be awkward, and hard for a 4-year-old to process. It honestly won’t matter if you tell her today, or 2 months from now. There’s nothing you can do to make this normal.”

You’re right Mom, I can’t make this normal, but I can make it less awkward.  Just give me a little time. I’d like Davinder to get used to me being her Mother before I spring a Grandma on her.

“Well, when are you going to tell her you’re her Mother?”

I’m not sure yet. I’ll have to talk with Vincent and we’ll figure out the best way to do it.

“Oh, I see you’re on a first name basis with the scoundrel.”

There’s no need for name calling, Mom. And, without him you wouldn’t be a Grandma.

“Well, I don’t feel like a Grandma since you won’t even let me meet Davinder.”

Alright, I’ve heard enough. I promise I will tell her who I am soon, so you can meet her.  Just be patient!

“You’re asking a lot of me right now, but I suppose I have no choice but to go along with this long, drawn out plan of yours.”

You’ve been waiting almost 40 years. What’s a few more months?

“MONTHS?! I can’t wait that long. I’ll give you maybe 2 weeks. That’s plenty of time for you and Victor…”

Vincent

“Whatever. 2 weeks is more than enough time. Make sure you send me pics of Davinder today. I have to show her off to my friends, and unsuspecting strangers in the stores.”

I’ll send you pics later. Have a great day, Mom. I’m going back to sleep.

 

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13. My Life is Like a Movie.

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Why the fuck are you in my home, Brent? I want my key back!

“I was in the neighborhood and I got hungry. I’m still hungry though, because you don’t have anything in this damn house except wine and coffee. I don’t know how you survive.”

There are a number of apps that allow me to have a nice warm meal delivered to my door every night. That’s how I survive. Get into it.

“You don’t even have condiments in this house, Eve. It’s becoming clearer to me every day why you can’t keep a man.”

Brent, it’s 2017. I’m just living my life according to today’s standards. And what makes you think I can’t keep a man? Have you ever considered that none of them have been good enough to keep me?

“No. I have never considered that because I know you ain’t shit.”

Whatever. I’m actually glad you’re here. You’ll never guess what happened to me today!

“I assure you I won’t, mainly because I’m not going to try. Wassup?”

I met my child and her father today! She’s sooooooooo beautiful, Brent!  She looks just like me. Look at this picture!

“Wow! She looks exactly like you, except she’s pretty. How did you make this happen so fast?”

It was so random. I was at the coffee shop and there was this ridiculously gorgeous man in there. I was cute today so I got up and made sure he noticed me. There was a picture of a beautiful little girl as the screensaver on his computer, so that started a conversation. Long story short… that gorgeous man is my baby’s daddy, and that screensaver is my Davinder.

“Get the fuck outta here, Eve. What really happened?”

I’m serious! I flirted my way into meeting my daughter. You know I’m usually not that forward with men, but Vincent was so fine, I had to put myself in position to be seen by him. I’m so happy I did, because I got to meet Davinder.  She’s perfect, by the way.

“She’s super cute. Mom is going to die when she meets her. I assume she’s a typical 4-year-old, but what’s her dad like? I mean… other than allegedly being the world’s most attractive man?”

If you discount the whole stealing my eggs and robbing me of my daughter’s first 4 years of life situation, he’s pretty awesome. He’s charming, funny and he loves our daughter. I probably couldn’t have chosen a better father for my child.

“You definitely couldn’t have with your track record. You choose the worst men, sis.”

That’s beside the point. We’re supposed to get together again Saturday to hang out. I can’t wait!

“Are you more excited to see Davinder or Vincent?”

What kind of question is that? I only care about seeing my daughter.

“It’s a legitimate question. The only reason you got to meet her today is because you basically street harassed her daddy. Are you still going to try to get at him? Maybe y’all can turn yourselves into a happy family. Your life could be a made for TV movie this time next year.”

Alright, I’ve heard enough from you. Go away.

“Fine, I’ll leave. Text me and let me know where you guys are meeting Saturday. Maybe I can swing by and get a look at my niece.”

I’ll think about it. Can I have my key back?

“No. Hit me up later.”

12. I’ve Learned Nothing

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We stayed at the food court for about 30 more minutes before Vincent and Davinder had to head home. We made plans to get together on Saturday so I can continue to get to know my daughter. She’s so amazing, I can’t wait for Mom and Brent to meet her. I have no clue what to do with the rest of my day. I’m kinda in a daze. I can’t believe I just met my daughter. For the first time in my life, my subtle flirting actually led to something worthwhile. I’m thankful my baby’s daddy is so fine I decided to go out of my way to make sure he noticed me. He seems to be a pretty nice guy, but they all start out that way. I can’t ignore the fact that he’s exactly the kind of guy I’m always attracted to, which isn’t normally a good thing. We’ll have to learn how to co-parent, but things are way too complicated for us to be anything other than friends… I think.

It’s a shame because under normal circumstances, I’d gladly let him waste several months, possibly even a year of my life. In my mind I’m very committed to learning from my past relationship mistakes, but in reality, I refuse to do better. The men I like are a lot of fun, until they aren’t. But, I cannot convince myself to date men I don’t instantly like. There are so many people in society that I do not trust who advocate for this, and that’s enough to make me think it’s not a good idea. Besides that, I don’t feel like the universe is going to make my “soulmate” be a person I have to talk myself into liking. I don’t care how many fairytales I hear about people falling in love with someone they once despised. I just absolutely refuse to believe the universe would put me through that. I don’t think it’s asking too much to send me someone I like. Hopefully the universe will one day send me a man whose good qualities outweigh his bad qualities. I wouldn’t mind if he is as fine as Vincent. He’s so good looking and charming I’m already over the fact that he did a whole lot of illegal shit, and robbed me of the first 4 years of our daughter’s life. I honestly don’t know if I’m joking or not. He’s that fine, and he made the most beautiful child I’ve ever seen. I don’t need to be influenced by that type of energy.  I’ve gotta focus on being motherly…whatever that means. Saturday can’t get here soon enough

Writer’s Block is REAL

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Soooooooooo, it’s been a while.  I just want you all to know I haven’t abandoned the blog, but I’m having a little writer’s block. I’m actively working on it, and I hope to have a chapter for you soon.  I so appreciate those of you that keep asking me about a chapter! I promise I’m going to get one to you soon. Take this time to reread the other 10 chapters as a refresher. *insert crying laughing face emoji*

 

Later!

11. Nervous

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As it turns out, I don’t really know what to chat with a four year old about. She’s a little ball of energy that can barely sit still long enough to eat. Vincent is practically begging her to stay in her chair and finish her food, but she’s unconcerned with his wants. I can tell she has him wrapped around her little finger.

“Ms. Evening, why is your car so messy?”

Well, a lot of that stuff I have to take to Goodwill. It’s a place where you take things you no longer need, and they are sold to people that do need them for a low price.

“I know that place. Daddy always says he’s going to take my toys there when I leave them in the middle of the floor, but he never does. Hehehehe!”

“She wouldn’t notice if I did. She has a million toys.”

“And I got a hundred more today!”

What’s your favorite toy, Davinder?

“My most favorite toy is my easy oven. I can make brownies and chocolate chip cookies!”

I had an Easy Bake Oven when I was a little girl too! I can’t believe they still make those things.  Hopefully the food has gotten better.

I don’t know whether or not they still make them. Seana had one that she got as a gift one year, but never opened. I just buy those cheap brownie and cookie mixes that only require water.”

Well at least she left her something. 

“Davinder, sit still and finish your food.”

“I am, Daddy. Stop saying that. It’s getting on my nervous.”

“Well you know it gets on my nerves, not nervous when you don’t eat your food.”

It’s taking everything in me to not burst into laughter.  I cannot believe she just told this man he’s getting on her nerves. I totally get it though. He’s been telling her to sit still every 2 minutes. Hell, he’s getting on my nerves too.

“I can tell you’re laughing on the inside, Eve. I told you she’s four going on fourteen with major attitude.”

In fairness to her, being told to sit still every couple of minutes would annoy me as well.

“She’ll be whining about being hungry in an hour if she doesn’t finish this food. One day you’ll understand why I have to keep getting on her nervous about eating.”

“You didn’t eat all of your food Daddy. Hope you’re not hungry, whiny in an hour.”

I couldn’t hold it in anymore. I burst into laughter, and so did Vincent. Davinder just smirked, and stuffed a chicken nugget in her mouth.

“I saw that, Eve.”

What did you see, Vincent?

“The moment you fell in love with my…our girl.”

10. Daddy Issues

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We decided to go into the CNN Center and sit at the food court to grab a quick bite to eat. You can tell a lot about a person by what they allow their kids eat. I anxiously waited to see if my baby’s daddy had any strange dietary restrictions for Davinder, but much to my delight he didn’t. He let her get chicken nuggets and macaroni and cheese. I’m so relieved to know he doesn’t have an agenda against processed foods. Davinder picked a table right beside a cluster of those gumball and toy machines full of choking hazards. Luckily for her, I have a wallet full of quarters, and once she realized I was willing to part with them, she was thrilled. She forgot all about her food and she’s camped out by those machines having a ball.

“Please don’t give her anymore quarters. She’s going to stay at those machines and ignore us all damn day.”

I hear what you’re saying, and I want to respect your wishes, but don’t rob me of this moment to give my daughter these little gifts that she so badly wants. I’ve got a lot of making up to do.

“That’s all in your mind. She doesn’t know you have anything to make up for, and technically you don’t.  It’s not like you were a deadbeat parent by choice. You’re not Seana.”

Does Davinder miss her?

“I don’t think so. Seana wasn’t very engaged while she was around, so I guess it was kind of easy for Davi to forget about her. She asked me about her once when she first left. Then, we just carried on without her.”

Wow. I can’t believe she just disappeared on you guys. My Dad essentially did the same thing and it kinda fucked me up for years. One might argue my daddy issues are very prevalent in my life considering the types of men I’m attracted to.

“What types of men are you attracted to?

Emotionally stunted, life of the party, never going to settle down alcoholics, Usually.

“Whoa… that’s um, interesting. If you’ve been able to pinpoint the problem with the men you choose, why don’t you just make a promise to yourself to not entertain men like that anymore? Like, the moment you find out he’s that type of person, you should end all communication. You know those things aren’t a recipe for a healthy relationship, so don’t allow yourself to get caught up with dudes like that.”

I don’t really have a good answer for why I don’t shut it down immediately. Men like that tend to also have some redeeming qualities.  The ones I’ve dealt with are always tall, handsome and funny. Those three things will get you in the door. Usually by the time I recognize the bad shit about them, enough time has passed that my feelings are involved and it’s not easy to just walk away.  I have a bleeding heart, and I always try to see the good in people.  Sometimes I let that go too far.  I guess there’s a part of me that is hopeful the next guy will be different. It hasn’t really worked out that way, so obviously I need to try something different. Although in fairness to me, I kinda did try to date a few guys I wouldn’t normally be attracted to.  It was a disaster each and every time, so I’m not sure where to go from there.

“How did your last relationship end?”

It was tragic. Cris fell asleep one night playing his XBOX and somehow he got tangled up in the cord and choked to death. And, as if that wasn’t enough… he had also left the water running in the bathroom sink and it overflowed and made it into the room and electrocuted him. It’s kinda unclear which one of those situations actually killed him.

“Seriously?”

Yeah, it’s unbelievable. I’ve healed and moved on from that though. I’m good.

“Are you?”

Absolutely! Anyway… Have you dated anyone since Seana left?

“I’ve not dated anyone seriously, but I’ve had a few women here and there to pass the time.”

Of course you have. Men always have a warm body available for those lonely nights.

“Haha! I don’t know anything about that. I’m just out here focusing on our daughter.  I don’t have time for anything serious. That little busy body heading this way needs way too much attention, and I’m more than happy to give it to her.”

“Look, Daddy! I got a hundred toys!!”

“Wow! Let me hold onto those for you. Please sit down and eat your food. Ms. Evening really wants to chat with you a little.”

“What do you wanna chat about Ms. Eeeeeeeeevening?”

This child of mine makes my heart smile.  I reach out and caress her little cheek…

I want to chat about everything.

 

9. My child thinks I’m a whore

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I’ve been sitting in this coffee shop staring at this picture of my child for over two hours.  I can’t believe how beautiful she is. I know every mother thinks their child is the most beautiful creature they’ve ever laid eyes on, but seriously; Davinder is gorgeous. I’m not just saying that because she’s the spitting image of me. She really is a vision. I should have gone to the park to see her. I just couldn’t bring myself to meet her today. What would I say? How would I even introduce myself? Vincent and I haven’t figured any of this out, and until we do, I probably shouldn’t meet her. Although in fairness, I don’t think the awkwardness of this situation can be avoided. I’m in my mid 30’s and I barely understand what’s happening. I can’t imagine what all of this information will do to a four year old.  I guess we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it. I have butterflies in my stomach. I want to kiss her little cheeks so badly! I’m going to drive by the park to see if I can get a peek. You’d think the odds would be pretty slim considering where the fountains are situated in relation to Marietta Street. But, I just met my child’s father in a coffee shop. Anything is possible.

Marietta Street is calm today. There are the usual tourists hovering around the entrance to Centennial Park, snapping selfies and soaking up the sun, but other than that it’s pretty quiet. The one day I need traffic to be a little heavy so I can creep down the street while trying to spot my baby and baby’s daddy, everyone is just zooming by. A few people were nice enough to give me the middle finger as they angrily sped around me. Downtown Atlanta is not the place to be if you’re in a hurry. Just because you aren’t out here stalking someone doesn’t mean someone else isn’t. Just as I’m passing the Omni Hotel, I spot Vincent and Davinder. They’re both drenched, but Davinder has a small Doc McStuffins towel draped over her shoulders. Her hair is dripping wet and sitting right on the top of her head in a messy bun. That happens to be one of my favorite hairstyles. I’m so giddy I can barely stand it! They’re just about to cross Baker St. so I slowly turn and pull off to the side. Vincent looked up at me and cracked the biggest smile I’ve seen in a while. He’s annoyingly fine. He’s holding Davinder’s hand while she skips alongside him. As they approach my car, Davinder is jumping up and down pointing at me and laughing.  I hope Vincent hasn’t told her about me.  I think that’s something we should do together. Maybe she thinks I’m someone else.  I roll down my window to see if I can hear what she’s so excited about. She’s now right up on my window, we’re face to face. She has the biggest snaggletooth smile, and she yells out, “DADDY SHE’S A WHOOOOOOOOOOOORE! SHE’S A WHOOOOOOORE!”

In this moment, I am mortified and very pissed. What kind of man let’s a four year old think that it is okay to use such language? I knew Vincent was an awful person! We wouldn’t be in this situation if he weren’t. How does she even know what a whore is? Why does she assume I’m one is probably a better question. She must follow me on Instagram.

“Davi! What are you talking about? Who taught you that word? That’s a very, very bad word!”

“But, Daddy… she IS a whore. Look inside her car! She’s just like those people on that TV show you watch that don’t throw away their garbage.”

“Ohhhh, you mean she’s a hoarder. You’re such a silly little girl, Davi. Her car is very junky, but it doesn’t mean she’s a hoarder.”

I just got all the confirmation I need that she is my child.  I’ve never been so sure of anything in my life.

 

8. How Did We Get Here?

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I’m standing outside the coffee shop wondering what the fuck is wrong with me. Why would I leave without talking to him? I’ve got to collect myself and go back in there and at the very least cuss his ass out.  He’s earned THAT! I walk back inside and he’s hunched over in his chair massaging his temples. I quietly retake the seat in front of him, and he looks up shocked, but he doesn’t speak. I feel like we’ve been sitting at this table staring at each other for hours, but it’s probably only been a minute or so. I think he’s waiting for me to say something. I desperately want to say something, but I can’t form words right now. When I get really angry, it’s almost impossible for me to speak, and right now, I’m angrier than I’ve ever been.  I want to yell at him, but I also want to storm out again. This is a tough spot for me. I’ve always been pretty judgmental toward people who make a scene in public, but in this moment, I finally understand how someone can be pushed to the point of acting a plum fool, as my Mom would say.

“Say something, please. Tell me what you’re thinking right now.”

You don’t want to know what I’m thinking right now, Vincent.

“I do want to know. I need to know. We have a lot of things to figure out, Eve.”

The only thing he needs to figure out is how he’s going to fair while he’s in prison. He’s very attractive. I can’t imagine that’s a good thing to be when you’re locked up.

Okay, I need you to help me understand why you thought it was okay to steal my eggs. Do you have any idea how difficult of a process it is to get to the point of freezing your fucking eggs? Do you even care?

“What? We didn’t steal your eggs! Dr. Halyard told us he was using donor eggs. He lied to us.”

You mean to tell me the Dr. who offered to secretly give you expensive fertility procedures at a discounted price is also a liar? Get the fuck outta here! That’s crazy!

“Look, I know it was wrong-ish, but I desperately wanted a child, and we just couldn’t afford to keep paying Windham.  I love Davinder with all my heart and I’d do it all over again if I had to. She is the absolute best thing that has ever happened to me. I’m not sorry she’s here, and believe it or not, I’m just as devastated as you are, albeit for different reasons.”

What in the hell do you have to be devastated about? You got to be there from the beginning. You got to see Davinder be born, cut her first tooth, say her first word, take her first step, and everything in between. There’s no fucking reason for you to be devastated! You have no idea how punchable your face looks right now. I missed the first 4 years of my child’s life! Our devastation level is NOT the same!

My blood is boiling. I wonder if there is steam coming out of my ears.

“I’m devastated because I could go to prison behind this. Imagine what that would do to Davinder. I know there’s nothing I can say that will make it up to you, but I didn’t do this to you on purpose.  I thought we were using the eggs of some young, fertile woman who was just looking to make some extra money by donating them. If I’m being honest, it felt like we were committing a victimless crime.”

There’s no such thing as a victimless crime, Vincent. That’s just what you told yourself so you wouldn’t feel bad about breaking the law. And, why do you keep speaking only about you? Where’s the woman Davinder knows as her Mother? Seana, is it?

“She never really wanted kids. She just went through the process because it’s what I wanted to do. Unfortunately she never really allowed herself to connect with Davinder. We officially divorced a couple of years ago, and I haven’t laid eyes on her since.”

Uh…sorry to hear that. I guess.

“How’s the air up there on that high horse of yours, Evening?”

Ugh, I cannot believe his nerve. How dare he sit in front of me and act like I’m being irrational about this situation?

Are you really going to act like I have no right to be upset? Is that really how you want to approach this?

“I’m not trying to minimize your feelings, but you’re not even trying to see this from my perspective.”

I don’t have to try to see this from your perspective. I’m the only person here who was truly wronged. And, aside from that, I just found out about this a few days ago. I haven’t had the luxury of time to get over the fact that I was fucked out of birthing my own child, who happens to be 4 years old, and also has NO IDEA I EVEN EXIST! So, don’t take this the wrong way, but fuck your perspective, Vincent!

He’s stunned into silence. I think I may have hurt his feelings. I don’t even care though. I’m pissed, and he’s being selfish. Maybe I’m being selfish too, but right now I can’t see past my anger.

“Well I can see where Davinder gets her attitude! Listen, I don’t know what else to say. Don’t take this the wrong way, but you have to calm down. This is a bad situation, and there’s no getting around that. But, we have to figure out how to move forward. We can’t dwell on how we got here. The bottom line is we’re here. What do we do now?”

I’m going to pretend he didn’t just tell me to calm down. I need to focus.

I don’t know what we should do now. I feel like my life is moving at light speed. I’m having a hard time keeping up, and it really feels like the universe is fucking with me.

“I kinda understand that feeling. I mean, obviously we’re on different sides of this, but my life has drastically changed over the past year as well. I need a resolution to this, preferably one that doesn’t involve me spending any time in prison. Look at me! I’m too pretty to be incarcerated.”

You probably should have thought about that before you started doing shady shit. What are they telling you? What kind of charges are you facing?

“Honestly, they haven’t really said much.  My lawyer is trying to work it out so that I don’t get into too much trouble. I might have to testify against Dr. Halyard one day, and I’ll gladly do so. I just want to be there for our daughter. She means the world to me.”

I have no doubt that he loves Davinder. I can see it in his eyes. I can’t let him off the hook so easily though. I’m still pissed, and it’s going to take more than a few heartfelt words for him to earn my forgiveness.

Where’s Davinder now? Is she in daycare?

“She’s at summer camp, and I have to get going soon because I told her I’d pick her up early and take her to Centennial Olympic Park to play in the water fountain. I don’t know if this is a good idea or not, but you should come by the park and meet her.”

I don’t think I’m ready for that right now.  Let me see the picture one more time.

He turns his screen around again, and I quickly snap a picture with my phone.

“I can send you as many pics as you want, Evening.”

This will do for now, but I think we should exchange numbers. We’ve got a lot of catching up to do.

“You’re right about that. I’ve gotta get going. If you change your mind about coming to the park, we should be there in about 45 minutes.”

I’ll think about it.

“All things considered, I’m happy to have met you like this, Eve. I can’t wait for you to meet our daughter. I think you two will hit it off.”

The sparkle has returned to his eyes, and suddenly I feel that flutter in my stomach again. Damn, he’s fine!  It’s too bad I’ve gotta make his life a living hell for the foreseeable future.

Get out of here, Vincent. I’ll text you if I decide to swing by.

7. Baby Mama Drama

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I usually have a hard time getting out of bed on Mondays, but today was different. I was really excited to get my day started. My appointment at Jackson’s Diagnostic Testing Center was a breeze. They swabbed my cheek, took a couple of vials of blood, and told me I would have the results of the DNA test no later than Wednesday.  I should probably go into the office, but I’m quite content people watching inside this coffee shop near my house.  There’s a very handsome man sitting a couple of tables over. He has a low haircut with really sharp lines. His skin is a beautiful caramel complexion, and his eyes are deep brown. He looks a bit disheveled for this time of day. It’s not even noon yet, but his sleeves are rolled to right beneath his elbow, and his tie is loosened. It looks like he’s had a hard day at work.

If I had a bit more courage, I’d go introduce myself, but I’ve never been good at that kind of thing.  I prefer subtle flirting, like brief eye contact or an accidental bump while walking by.  Unfortunately, he hasn’t looked up from his laptop so we haven’t been able to make incidental eye contact. I guess I’ll have to take the scenic route past his table and go get a refill.  This teal maxi dress I wore today is always a head turner. It hugs me in all the right places, and I’ve been told on more than one occasion that the color looks great on my dark skin. As I walk toward the front of the coffee shop, he briefly looks up at me and smiles. I tilt my head to the side a little, and smile back at him.

As I’m standing at the counter perfecting my cup of hazelnut coffee, I see him walking toward me out of the corner of my eye. This is my chance to be bold. Considering what I’ve been through the last three days, flirting with an attractive man should be easy.

“Could you pass me the raw sugar, please?”

I clumsily hand him the container full of raw sugar.  My hands are shaking, although I’m not sure why.

“How are you doing today?”

I’m doing okay. How’s your day going?

“It’s going pretty well, I suppose. I’ve never seen you before and I practically live here. You must not come here often.”

Well, I’m usually at work this time of day, but I took a little time off to handle some personal matters. How are you able to spend so much time in here? Do you own this place?

“Nah, I’m self-employed, and sometimes I feel like the walls are closing in on me when I’m at home or my office. I come to the coffee shop to people watch. It gets my creative juices flowing.”

My only mission while sitting in here today is to people watch.

“Oh, I know. I’ve seen you watching me for the past twenty minutes.”

I hope my face isn’t showing how flustered I am. I swear I didn’t notice him look up at me. How in the hell did he know I was checking him out? He probably thinks every woman is checking him out considering he’s so damn fine. He obviously doesn’t even pretend to not know it.

No way! I may have glanced at you once or twice, but the rest of the time I was looking at the plant behind you.

He’s laughing hysterically. His eyes are sparkling, and his teeth are perfect. I hope he doesn’t think I’m a creep.

“So you’ve got a thing for plants?”

As a matter of fact, I do. I have what one might describe as a green thumb. I’ve kept my artificial house plants in mint condition for years.

“Wow, that’s pretty impressive. Perhaps you should come join me at my table so you can get a closer look… at the plant.”

Are you sure I won’t be distracting you from work?

“You’ll definitely be a distraction, but I’m okay with that.”

I just felt a flutter in my stomach.  Not only is he fine, he’s also charming. That’s a combination that can low key ruin your life if you’re not careful.

I’d love to join you. I’m dying to get closer to that plant.

We walked back to his table, and as I’m standing there waiting for him to clear off some space for me, I notice his screen saver is a picture of a beautiful little brown skinned girl. She has thick curly hair, and the brightest eyes I’ve ever seen.  She is what I imagine Davinder looks like.

Is that your daughter?

“Yes, that’s my little sweet pea.  She’s the most amazing child ever, in my clearly unbiased opinion.”

She’s absolutely gorgeous. How old is she, if you don’t mind me asking?

“I don’t mind at all. She’s four going on fourteen.”

She’s Davinder’s age. Maybe I should ask for some parenting advice.

“What about you? Do you have any kids?”

Oh shit, I’m not sure how to answer that question.

Um, I think so.

“You think so? Do we need to take you on the Maury Povich show? Is some guy trying to trap you by claiming you’re his baby’s mama?”

He’s amused with himself, and I can’t help but laugh.

It’s a long, complicated story that’s a little heavy for coffee between strangers.

“I think strangers are the best people to lay your burdens on. They don’t know you, so they have no preconceived notions about what you should or shouldn’t do.  They might judge you, but hell you shouldn’t care since you’ll probably never see them again anyway.”

So you’re saying I should treat you as if I’ll never see you again?

“For the purpose of this conversation, you should absolutely treat me like you’ll never see me again. I’m very curious about you. I’ve never met a woman who didn’t know whether or not she has a child. I need answers. I promise I won’t judge you.”

He’s right. If a woman told me she “thinks” she has a child, I’d want an explanation too.

I’ll tell you, but you probably won’t believe me. It’s a really crazy situation, and there’s still a lot that I don’t know.

“Just tell me what you know.”

I’ll give you a very condensed version of my story. I was paying a clinic to store my frozen eggs, and one of their doctors illegally fertilized and implanted them into a surrogate for a young couple.  They had a little girl; she’s four years old now.  So, biologically I am a mother. I just found all of this out a few days ago, so that’s why I wasn’t sure how to answer your question.

He has a blank look on his face, and his eyes have suddenly stopped sparkling. He looks like a kid who just found out Santa Claus isn’t real. I knew this wasn’t an appropriate conversation for getting to know someone.

What’s wrong? You said you wouldn’t judge me, but I definitely feel judged. Your whole mood changed.

“I’m sorry. I just… that story really is unbelievable. Do you know anything about the couple that’s raising your child?”

Not really. I know they live in the Atlanta area, and I know their names are Vincent and Seana. I hope to find out more about them in the next few weeks.

Speaking of names, I just realized we haven’t formally introduced ourselves. My name is Evening, but most of my friends call me Eve.

“Is your last name Hammonds?”

How in the hell does he know my last name? I’m a little freaked out right now.

Yes, how do you know my last name? I don’t think we’ve ever met, because I never forget a face.

“I know your last name because I’m, uhhh your child’s father”

Suddenly I can’t breathe. I feel like I’m about to faint. Did he just say what I think he said? Did I really just accidentally meet Davinder’s dad? You have got to be fucking kidding me!

“Breathe, Eve.”

Let me see the picture of her again, please.

He turns his screen around, and suddenly all I see is this beautiful mini version of me.

“Say something, Eve.”

I stand up, gather my shit and head for the door. Just as I’m about to walk out, I turn around and yell to Vincent, “SEE YOU ON MAURY!”

6. Mom

Click on About if you’re new here.

Standing in the kitchen after having slept almost 14 hours straight, I have a ridiculous headache at the thought of talking to my Mom. I know she’s going to have a million questions, and I probably won’t be able to answer most of them. It would be easier if I could wait another week or so, but I might literally have to kill Maria Hammonds if I don’t call her today.  I may need to have coffee spiked with Tequila before our conversation, but morning drinking is something only alcoholics do. I’m going to call her on her cell phone. She won’t answer because she never has that thing on her. She can whine and moan all she wants, but she won’t be able to dispute the fact that I cal… <BANG, BANG, BANG>

Oh, God! I know it’s my Mom on the other side of that door. The universe is so out to get me these days. Maybe I’ll just pretend I’m not home.

“I KNOW YOU’RE IN THERE, EVENING. OPEN UP!”

My coffee isn’t even finished brewing. She has a knack for showing up at the most inconvenient time.

HOLD ON, MOM. I HAVE TO PUT SOME PANTS ON!

“GET OVER YOURSELF, EVENING. THERE’S NOTHING ON YOU THAT I HAVEN’T SEEN BEFORE!”

She’s going to wake my neighbors with all of this unnecessary yelling, and then I’ll have to hear about it at our next monthly meeting.

I open the door and my Mother is standing there in a very elegant, over the top white suit with a humongous hat covering her curly tresses. She could be headed to church, or she could be headed to the grocery store. She doesn’t really believe in casual clothes, so you never know.
Good morning, Mom. These early, unannounced visits bring me an indescribable amount of joy.

“Well, it’s my understanding that you should be well rested. Didn’t you sleep until 2 p.m. yesterday?”

Yes, Mom, I did sleep in a bit yesterday. I have a lot going on.

“You can’t justify sleeping half the day away by saying you have a lot going on. That’s illogical, Evening. “If you got out of bed at a decent hour, maybe you wouldn’t have so much going on, dear.”

My Mom really has no patience for laziness. She’s up at the crack of dawn every day, and by 10:00 a.m. she’s usually accomplished more than I do in a full day.

Mom, have a seat please, we need to talk. Actually, I need to talk and you need to listen. Are you okay with that?

“Yes. Is everything okay, Eve?”

Yes and no. You’re going to have a lot of questions, and I’m not sure I’ll be able to answer all of them. There’s still a lot I don’t know.

“Are you sick? Are you dying? Dear lord… What’s wrong child? I can feel my blood pressure rising!”

Bring it down a notch, Viola Davis. I’m not dying! I’m going to let you read this letter I got from Dr. Salaam at Windham Fertility Center, and then we’ll discuss it.

I’m watching her scan the note and I kid you not, she turned into the heart eyes emoji right in front of me. She looks up at me all lovingly, but she’s speechless for the first time in her life.

Say something, Mom!

“I’M A GRANDMA!”

That is definitely not the reaction I was expecting. I just knew she’d have some snarky remarks about my decision to freeze my eggs in the first place.

“When do I get to meet my Granddaughter?”

I don’t know, Mom. I haven’t even met her yet. I just found out about her a couple of days ago. I’m not even sure what I’m gonna do.

“What do you mean you’re not sure what you’re going to do? You’re going to get this child and raise her, Evening!”

It’s not that simple. Her father still has rights too. I’m sure he’s not going to let her go without a fight.

“I’m not afraid to fight for your child, and you shouldn’t be afraid either!”

It’s not that I’m afraid. I just want to make sure I do what’s best for Davinder. This can’t be all about me. What if her dad is a good person, who did a bad thing? I can’t just rip her away from the only family she’s ever known.

I can’t even believe I just entertained the idea that Vincent might not be a piece of shit. Wow, so much growth, in so little time. I’m amazing.

“Evening, no matter what kind of person he is, or what kind of household he’s provided for her, you deserve to have a relationship with your child. I deserve to have a relationship with my granddaughter! What if you never have another child? You’re 35 and you haven’t had a decent relationship since Cris disappeared. This could be our last chance!”

You’re convinced I’m going to die with 20 cats, aren’t you?

“That’s preposterous! You don’t even like cats.”

Ugh, this is all such a mess, Mom. It wasn’t supposed to be like this. I was supposed to have a child on my terms.

“Well unfortunately things didn’t work out that way. Let’s just focus on the situation at hand. I want to meet my granddaughter!”

Mom, calm down.  It could be a while before we get to meet her. There’s still a lot I don’t know.

“Well hurry up and figure this out, child! I need more information so I can go shopping for my granddaughter! I’m going to dress her like a princess!”

It’s good you’ve been able to identify what’s really important, Mom.

“Try to put yourself in my shoes, Eve. That brother of yours is probably never going to settle down long enough to have a child. And again, you’re not getting any younger. I have to take what I can get.”

I was ready and willing to give you a grandchild years ago. If only Cris hadn’t been eaten alive by fire ants because he fell asleep at the park one afternoon. My life would be so different.

“Sigh… Anyway, I’m quite confident we can provide a very nice life for her. It might be different than what she’s used to, but we have plenty of money. She’ll adjust.”

Mom is so optimistic. I don’t know why she has so much faith in me. I’ve never even had a pet. There’s a very real possibility I’m incapable of keeping a living, breathing creature alive.  Not to mention, I have no motherly instincts. None of my friends with kids have ever asked me to babysit. I don’t think that’s a coincidence.

“I have to leave, my dear. I have a few errands to run and a lot of shopping to do for…What was her name again?”

Davinder.

“What a lovely name. I can’t wait to be able to place a face with it.”

She turns to leave, then stops and gives me the tightest hug ever.  She’s thrilled to be a Grandma.

I’ve never seen such joy in my Mom’s eyes. People always say your parents love your kids a little more than they love you.  She hasn’t even met Davinder yet, and I can pretty much confirm that’s true.

I think her enthusiasm has rubbed off on me. All of the angst I’ve felt up until this moment has washed away. Suddenly, I can’t wait to meet my daughter!

I’m going to email my boss and let him know I won’t be in at all this week. I’m sure he won’t be thrilled about it, but he’ll figure it out. As much as I’d love to believe the company will fall apart without me, I know that’s not true. I’m going to go in bright and early and give my DNA sample, and then maybe I’ll go buy a few things for Davinder myself.