Sunrises, Sunsets, and Other Romantic Notions

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Saturday evening, Trent and I were invited to attend a family barbecue hosted by my step-mother’s side of the family.

We bickered right before we went in about something inconsequential, like dishes, and I found myself feeling overwhelmed and uncomfortable in this new place with new faces and well-intended questions about our lives. I struggle with social anxiety, and it’s easy for me to get lost in newness. I sat on the steps next to Trent, and tried to relieve some of the anxiety I felt by eating salsa and leaning on his shoulder. It occurred to me that they possibly felt intimidated by me as well, yet I still felt paralyzed, and conversations felt shaky. I felt comforted by all the little kids who were there, and one little girl in particular caught my attention. Every time I’d turn to look at her as she approached me, she’d stop in her tracks, look down, and jut out her lip in a sad, pouty-face sort of way. We had a laugh about it, and I tried not to take it personally.

Trent and I eventually moved out to the green lawn where the kids were throwing around some frisbees and a football, and I took out some of the anxious energy I had by joining in. They were so sweet and little, and as I looked over at Trent with one of the boys on his shoulders, I suddenly realized that I wanted a family.

I suppose some people always know that they’re going to be mothers and wives or career women, but I’ve been the sort of person who had never quite decided. I knew I'd be good at whatever I chose to be, but "mother" seemed so distant and foreign to me.

The more time I spent with these little kids in this ridiculously ideal backyard situation, the more I felt a  palpable desire to have my own. Funny how these feelings can suddenly hit, though in retrospect, it feels almost cliché to be writing about an evolutionary aphiphany taking place among adorable children playing in the sunshine. "Of course you'd feel that way!" you say.

More than anything, I know it has to do with the fact that I’m in a loving relationship, and have been for a solid five years now. I happen to know Trent would make an excellent father, and though we’re not married yet, it’s definitely in our future plans together.

So, that’s out there. Marriage. Babies. Everything. It’s something I realized I definitely want someday.

On another note, have you guys seen Before Sunrise and Before Sunset? I just saw the third movie, Before Midnight, and I feel like I’m still in a movie trance. We had a marathon on Friday night and watched the two prequels in preparation, which gave the sense of growing with them as a couple. The third movie had a little more realism, which I've learned to really appreciate in movies. I feel like that was somethining that Blue Valentine was going for, and pretty much nailed, but it was just too intensely negative. Before Midnight left us on a bit of a delightful high, and anticipating what happens next. I loved the milestone-effect that each of the movies had of them in their youth. The first film, wandering with no time table, into the next film, which had grounded them both in new relationships and difficult obligations, but with that continuing ineffable draw they have toward each other. The thing I love most about these movies, aside from the sense that you are there having these intimate dialogues with them, is that it all feels so natural. There’s subtlety, which is so rare in movies nowadays, where it’s more common to feel as if you’re hearing actors read a movie script rather than witnessing a moment in time.

Perhaps that’s fueling my decision to eventually start a family? I hear romantic movies are good for that.



  1. A couple things. First, congrats on your epiphany! No matter what kind of realization one may have it's always nice to know you have some sort of direction and aspiration to obtain. Being a mother is a wonderful thing, hard, but definitely wonderful. And second, I too have serious social anxiety. I'm always nervous about conversation and feeling accepted in social settings. But only around adults, kids and babies I could talk to all day, I relate to them much better.

    1. Allyssa- thanks so much! It's true- even the "knowing" what you want can sometimes be hard- so it does feel a little exciting to have a better idea of what I'd like my life to look like in the future.

      As for the social anxiety- I think it's pretty common- especially for creative types like ourselves who have very specialized interests, and find it difficult to venture out of our bubbles, so to say. Children are easy to talk to because they're so open. They say what's on their mind! We get in trouble a lot more often when we do that, don't we? ;)


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