TIME IS HARD
These are the height markings on my daughter’s bedroom wall. They are hard to see because one day she took a pencil and extended them up and down the wall as far as she could reach. So now they are like this:
Real lines, mixed up with fake ones. But after all, it’s her room.
Or it was. In a few weeks we are moving to a new apartment and leaving this one we’ve lived in for six years behind. We moved in when she was ten months old from a one bedroom with her crib at the base of our bed. It’s really the only apartment she’s ever known. So far she seems very blasé about it, maybe even excited (she’s been promised a pink room). And we’re only moving four blocks away, after all.
But it’s throwing me for a loop. There’s something jarring about having someone grow up from a little baby into a tiny person in a place. Many of the objects are the same, but she’s grown up around them. I can look at pictures of her in the same couch, in the same room, in the same place and she’s a baby. And now she’s six.
I have video of her learning to walk in our living room, then fumbling down the hallway. I have pictures of her standing on a stool, red-faced from a hot summer day, holding an ear of corn, diaper-clad. That’s the same kitchen she stands in today, asking for “a snack” before breakfast.
But in a few weeks, we move on to a new kitchen, a new living room. Our yardstick, our apartment changes.
TIME IS HARD. I moved in with my wife (then girlfriend) right after September 11th, 2001; our new lease had started, but we were painting. From our new bedroom window, we could see the towers and then, when we moved in, they were gone.
The other day, my brother and I ate dinner in Dumbo and as we were walking home we saw the twin lights from downtown. We climbed up onto the bridge to look. There’s those two beautiful lights and also a new tower rising.
TIME IS HARD. We moved into this apartment six years ago, and it’s been our home. It’s been a lovely home for us and we’ll have other lovely homes. And maybe it’s okay for things to change around us as we change, but it isn’t easy.