For the past three years, my energy has been moving: Chicago to Ithaca to Santa Cruz. The investigation is a history and a relationship: I go back to Buffalo and think about when I was leaving Buffalo to go to anywhere else. Historically, I’ve put some pins on a map and counted countries. Personally, I haven’t stopped wanting some semblance of a home—two sticks to triangle and the smell of cinnamon rubbed off the stick.
Intellectually, I’ve excavated the concepts of a home and found it mostly false and caught up in the other illusions of a stable and secure life. Still, I married and I prefer to know what time dinner is happening so that, every night, the uncertainty is that much more difficult. I fold laundry and do all the things that seem like a trapped person’s routine, but the domestic and the tethering feels less knotted: I like to know it’s avocado season and that Colby liked the shortbread cookies.
So when the brunette woman turns to me and says, “So you won’t be going dancing now that you’re pregnant,” I want to punch her in the face. I see her look at my belly like I’ve given up, like I’ve somehow forgotten Anna Karenina, how Kitty was tied to her child, her house, and both her husband and child refused her breast; or how badly Tolstoy wanted to problematize the routine of domestic and family life.
I don’t think this is stable or secure and the rising stomach reminds me that everything will change, but my body is home and it’s the only place I haven’t been able to leave. I put my energies into living less in my head, less far and away, and starting to inhabit the place of my body (since someone else is inhabiting it too).