I asked for lingerie. I’ve never done that before. And given my history of eating disorders, it’s kind of the last thing I’d ever wear even if I was on a deserted island and the bra cups were made of protein bars. But I thought after giving birth to our third kid, if we ever found time to have sex again, I should make it special. So I threw out the idea in passing maybe a week before.
“So, for Valentine’s Day, you need to get me something sexy.”
My husband Jay wiped some baby poop off his shorts before answering, “We celebrate Valentine’s Day now?”
Honestly, the only reason I knew it was coming up was because our daughter was furiously scribbling bubbly hearts for all her kindergarten friends. Also, Jay runs a martial arts school and on Valentine’s Day they were hosting a big karate pizza party. He asked if I wanted to come with the kids that night.
“Yes please oh yay!” I yelped.
Jay works weeknights at his school and he knows I start panicking as soon as the sun starts melting into sunset. It’s illogical and obsessive of course. What starts as a simple “Mama, I have to poop” turns into a cataclysmic outbreak of diphtheria in my brain faster than I can count to ten. Jay has come home many nights to me practicing my deep breathing, hovered over an exposure video of people throwing up, or blaring the TV and the radio at the same time while I circle the apartment with incense.