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Size 2

There's a picture of me and Andy on our refrigerator. We are in graduate school, visiting a museum, of course. I have a short pixie hair cut and am sporting a turtle neck and size 2 jeans. Andy looks tired and rugged. He has a beard and is wearing worn out jeans and tennis shoes. We have our arms wrapped around one another. We are so young and so in love.

Beside this photo is one of me and Andy at a wedding in Puerto Rico. A tiny baby Caroline is cradled protectively in my arms. She is just four weeks old. My hair is long and my skin is red from a sunburn. My face, arms, belly and breasts are big and round. Andy has on a button-up short sleeved shirt and his face is a red as mine. His grins widely at the camera as his arm drapes over my shoulder. We are young and in love with this baby, this moment.

Many other happy memories adorn the refrigerator and I look at every one each time I open the door: my mom, dad and me when I'm 4 or 5. Me in high school with dyed-blonde streaks in my hair, wearing a skirt and combat boots. Shots of us at graduations and shots of us around Cooperstown. But there are no recent photos of me. I'm 100% in charge of the fridge photos and I have purposely avoided posting any photos of me in mom (minus the just-birthed-a-babe glow) mode.

I asked Andy the other day if he was upset that I don't look like the young woman in the size 2 jeans, hugging him tightly like there was no one in the world but him. He didn't really answer me directly and I can only assume that the answer is yes. Andy looks exactly as he did when we met, when we got married and when we brought Caroline into this world. He wears the same clothes, sports the same hairstyle (give or take a beard, depending on the season) aspires to accomplish the same goals, gets up and goes to bed at the same time, reads the same genre of books and drives his car just as fast.

I, on the other hand, don't just look different, I am different. My hard jaw line and jutting hips have been replaced with soft roundness. My breasts are still small but they fall a few inches lower on my chest. My hair, well, it's never the same, but it too has lost it's edge and instead embodies boring simplicity and ease. My life goals have done a 360. I read parenting and self-help books. I drive like a turtle. Like my Saaab 900, the car of my twenties, my current car, a Dodge Caravan, is silver and has four wheels but it is not cool or spunky. I used to pride myself on being an "individual", on being unique and being noticed. Now I like to be the neutral wallpaper that makes Caroline pop.

For ten years I have tried to mold Andy into the man I've wanted him to be. I've tried to make him eat better, go to bed earlier, clean up after himself and to be more romantic. Yet, he just keeps being the guy that I met in graduate school. My life with him is so humorously predictable it's blog worthy. And for ten years Andy has watched me physically and mentally transform from a young woman to a mature parent. When I ask, "For the millionth time, why can't you pick up your clothes? Why do I have to keep asking you to write your schedule on the calendar?" he asks, "Why can't you be fun and easy going like you used to be? Why can't you be spontaneous like you used to be?" I've gone through a metamorphosis like so many other women it's humorously predictable. It's blog worthy.

Men want women to stay the same and we just keep changing. Women want men to change and they just stay the same. Wish I'd known that ten years ago. Who am I kidding, I'd still want him to pick up his damn socks and I'd still wish I was a size 2.


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