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  • My friend is having a baby really soon. Maybe today.

    When she first told me, we were walking through the warm air to Starbucks for fancy drinks, sneaking out of the office for an afternoon break. When she said she had news to tell me, I thought she was going to say that she'd had another job offer or that her and her husband were moving away. I would not have guessed that there was going to be a new baby come chilly March!

    Five seconds after the news, I already had a nickname for my surrogate niece/nephew: Ticket. As in, "ticket outta here." I knew that JD would not be coming back to the organization that we both are so frustrated with. She did have a new job offer, in a sense. So, as she grew and grew over the next several months, the reality of the baby nicknamed "Ticket" grew too. When she decided that she wouldn't come back to work after maternity leave, I wasn't surprised.

    I'm happy for her, and sad too, because I'm losing an ally and friend at work. More than that even, my sadness really goes beyond the relationship with my friend; I've wanted a baby of my own for years and have recently realized that it's not ever going to likely happen. This perceived failure of my own traditional womanhood is something that I reflect on quite a bit, although this is the first time that I've written or said anything about it publicly.

    I did realize that I needed to create my own Ticket out of the life I was leading and not loving, and that my Ticket could potentially be anything. So I started grad school. I have been working at leaving parts of me that are not really ME behind. It's a process. At the end, I won't have a little baby to hold, but I'll hopefully have a spark of who I want to be to hold instead.
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