Sydney is particularly beautiful at the change of season and, despite climate change and still cheering government change and not forgetting the spare change I gave to the man with no fingers playing a harmonica in the middle of the footpath, this morning was no exception.
I am in a strange place right now; Tricky getting older and more independent and, well, tricky (but in a good way) and last week the getting of a new job (or jobette as I think of them because being a feckless artiste one rarely gets a proper long term job) and somewhere floating in the back of my mind a wee frozen speck of life waiting for C and I to give the word for the Great Defrosting.
Dr Lovely Accent said that when I was ready I should just call the House Of Groovy IVF Love and activate my cycle. In my mind I envisage a posse of sleeper fertility sisters, syringes poised, reclining in a semi darkened room waiting for the red light to flash. But the truth is, I could have activated them on that day. Instead I told Dr Lovely Accent that it was too soon, that I’d have to wait and check my diary etc and then we could decide. I expect he thought I was a dickhead but he said that was fine and to let him know.
Check my diary? For god’s sake. Why not order hair colour and shoe size while I was at it.
The thing is, it’s not the diary that’s ill prepared for this, it’s me. I want to have another baby and I want that frozen embryo to be it but at the same time I’m only now starting to feel like my body has come back to me, my mind is firming up again. We sleep more. Tricky wakes anytime from 6am (and, very rarely, earlier) and it’s all go from then but he’s usually asleep from 7.30 pm. It’s working. There’s a system. And now I’m about to go and fuck with the system. But this year I turn 40. And if frozen embryo turns up its frozen cells that will be toes and we go for another egg retrieval then… well...time’s ticking. Is all's I'm saying.
One of the outcomes of this jobette is that some sort of consistent childcare for Tricky has become imperative. At the moment we get by with a sort of half and half approach, both C and I are working from home at the moment (but C will be back working in the country after Easter) and we’ve been able to juggle meetings, reports, scripts and budgets around Tricky’s needs. But it’s not going to be enough. And apparently quality childcare isn’t sitting your toddler in front of the spare laptop to watch endless reruns of Hairy McClary on dvd. Who then, and where and how much?
So, all this and more swirling through my mind when we took Tricky out this morning, both of us because C’s just rooted his back and can’t pick Tricky up at the moment. We grabbed a couple of coffees (yes, even me, evil temptation that is caffeine) and pastries and strolled to an inner-city park so that Tricky could expend some energy on the swings and slides.
We had to make do with the swings, at least for a while, because a couple of junkies-in-love were entwined below the slippery dip, shooting up and scratching at each other’s back. This made me cross at first but then I thought, well, if I wanted to shoot up smack maybe I’d sit there too. It was a very pleasant spot with the trees gently swaying and the traffic humming past. Even the pigeons were an attractive white or speckly colour, not the usual rat grey. As I pushed Tricky I watched them, junkies not pigeons, hoping they would go soon. Both guy and girl were wearing neat white socks and tennis shoes, I noticed.
The script producer rang at this moment so I swapped with C and he took over swing pushing and junkie watching and I discussed crossbow homicides and Final Draft. Another toddler, and mother, appeared while I was talking. They had no problem climbing onto the slide above the junkies.
They must be from around here, I thought.
As I finished the call, both toddlers were now stomping and laughing on the slides and ramps. Quite calmly the junkies-in-love gathered together their bits and bobs in a bit of newspaper and meandered out from under the slide.
We should just check they haven’t left a needle under there, the other mother said quietly and I bent and looked under – all clean.
I straightened up and watched the junkies drifting down the lane, the guy stopping to drop his newspaper and contents neatly in a bin.
And Tricky laughed and C held his back and groaned a little and I wondered how long it would take to install Final Draft and the Other Mother talked about her local childcare centre and time ticked on.
And somewhere in the city a speck of frozen life lay waiting.
And it was still a beautiful morning.