The day the post goes viral, we are dealing with a different kind of virus altogether.
The baby doesn’t sleep well. She’s up well before dawn, doesn’t want breakfast, doesn’t want Fave, who is himself a mess of sniffles and headache and the occasional chill. I have a few minutes to glance at my laptop between her cries and his sneezes. The knot in my stomach tightens just a bit.
The day the post goes viral, I forget to pick up more milk. Halfway through my Target run, the literal sick-hubs-and-sad-baby at home kind of run, I glance down and realize the entire left sleeve of my sweater has grown a crust of snot and drool and bits of somebody’s lunch. I know it’s silly, but I feel like maybe I should have dressed up today, this day, this weirdest of all days.
All day long, texts and emails roll in from friends who have watched our little article ricochet across the wilds of the internet, messages filled with exclamation points and sarcastic admonitions about remembering the little guys. I hold my breath for a minute, buy a latte, crank up the radio.
The day the post goes viral, I swear more than usual. Because incredulity will do that to a girl.
This corner of the web and I have been together for a long, long time, and I won’t lie to you and pretend this kind of attention isn’t something I wished for. All of us here, writing into our own adorably-titled voids, are secretly hoping you’re somewhere reading, somewhere watching, somewhere hearing our hearts as we offer them and echoing back “You are, you are, you are not alone.”
The day the post goes viral is quiet, and the rain is coming down in Portland, and there are nine leftover star-shaped birthday party balloons in an awkward constellation on my ceiling. My phone buzzes with a gospel choir of “Hallelujah, this is what you’ve been working for and have always wanted” and I’m grateful, so grateful, and so glad you’re here, but mostly…
The baby needs to be rocked for an hour as she falls asleep. The text bonanza is interrupted by pleas from poor sick Fave as he and sleep avoid each other in our bed.
And that thing I’ve always wanted? I’ve had that all along.
Thank you, beautiful new interwebby friends, for lifting me up today. Welcome to our wacky little love-fest. We have space for you. We tell the truth here, and we try to give each other hope. We try to stay thankful. We fear no poop.
I hope you’ll stay.