Friday, February 15, 2008

Sex and the Mommy

Whenever I watch Sex and the City reruns, I get the urge to move back to New York, lose 20 ( okay, 30) pounds, start smoking again (hence the lost pounds), and most of all, be free to sit in my impossibly nice apartment on a rainy urban day, pondering life and relationships, and writing my short, well-paid column.

I told my husband this. He didn't say, "Mee TOOooo!" like my girlfriends would have. But I wonder if he has always suspected this about me and SATC, and that's why he has never liked it. On the other hand, that is, of course, why women love the show. We fantasize about life as a single woman: the freedom, the fun, the sex.

I was once a single New Yorker, making decent money and having fun. What I do now is so far from who I was 20 years ago, I feel like a character in an imposter movie, where a lookalike steps in and starts living a new life in the same body (or a larger, lumpier version).

I'm doing okay in my assumed life; in some areas (like motherhood) I'm actually quite proud of my performance. I seem happy and productive. People, I suspect, are buying it. And me? Well, I can no longer figure out which is the real me. I mean, many times I wonder when I agreed to stop being what I thought I was (informed, energetic, optimistic and cheerful, sometimes sexy, passionate, passionately loved), and be the new me (oblivious, grumpy, frumpy, and tired waaaayy too often).

I sound cynical and a little bit sad, I realize. And probably I am. But that's not all I am. I am also okay with being a bit oblivious (I'm still tracking what's important to me, like what Josie's favorite color of crayon is this week), I can often fight my way back to optimism, and I'm blessed with a healthy and loving and smart and interesting family of origin, two assertive, affectionate and beguiling daughters, a good and loving man who tries his hardest to be what everyone needs of him and who is a fantastic father, and a small passel of great friends. I am also, as of this year, making real money as a writer, because I asked the universe for it and prepared for it.

So yeah, I'd like more cosmos and some strappy sandals in my life. But if it meant I'd have to trade in my new life, I'd just as soon pass, and watch it on TV in my sweats instead.

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