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Is the A train as fast as it needs to be?
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The thing about Mother's Day is that I'm still so new at this. Does it matter? Will it eventually? Who can say? You know, in my family we don’t do birthdays all that big. Arbitrary rules: the spine of parenthood.
While I was still pregnant, and the New York City Ballet announced this new work, with commissioned music from my favourite little sister (after myself) of all time, Solange Knowles, I made the decision immediately—no matinee performance for me. What was I, an out-of-towner, cramming in shows with only quantity as the filter? No, thank you. As Ray Charles once sang: "you know the nighttime, darling/ is the right time."
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This will be a treat, I said to myself, sweating and heavy-with-bump last autumn. After all those months postpartum, for sure I will be ready to leave this baby with a paid caregiver and go enjoy a night of dance and music. I did not look at the calendar and think about Mother’s Day.
The baby has only got cuter; this is the most interesting version yet. Saying goodbye is not a full wrench any more — I have returned to work and we have an excellent nanny. The show was a mixed bag but, you know, worth leaving the house for. And yet by 9:30 I was stifling a yawn. The spirit was willing but the flesh has been conditioned to cosleep at 8. For nights like this and for people like me, the express train back to Brooklyn needs to be a helicopter service. Via text, I learned that the baby, oblivious, slept on.
In any case, I already celebrated Mother's Day in the UK, back in March. If I turn out to be the sort of mum who, down the line, enjoys Mother's Day, I will make sure to always celebrate both. Per my visa, I deserve it! And I'm also sure I always deserve tickets to see a show at Lincoln Centre. I just have to relearn the ability to stay awake and alert at nighttime.