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I often have dreams in which I get up, get dressed, and go through most of my morning. It is always somewhat disheartening when I finally wake up only to find that I have to start this routine all over again. Nobody likes the part of the morning where you have to leave your nice cozy bed and get moving, and on those mornings I have to do it twice!

This morning, I had what started as one of those dreams. I woke up, got out of bed, and paused a moment to admire the beautiful park outside our bedroom window. When I turned back to the room, however, I found myself facing a large tiger. I wasn’t sure what his intentions were, and from the contemplative look in his eyes and the way he was sniffing me, he wasn’t either. This was unnerving.

Then it occurred to me that our bedroom window does not look our over a park. Aha! I must be dreaming, I thought, and promptly woke up.

It was only later, after a cup of coffee, that I stopped to consider the fact that it was the inappropriate scenery, not the enormous striped carnivore, that clued me in to the non-reality of the situation.

My subconscious is a little weird.

When I was a little girl, I thought my mother was entirely too old when she had me. No way I’m waiting until I am the ANCIENT age you were, I would say with all the wisdom of my handful of years. At the time, I couldn’t even imagine being so old as that, all the way past the teens and even through the twenties. How could she have waited so long, I wondered. I swore I would have children earlier than she did, that by the time I reached that deadline I would have surely had at least one and maybe two or three kids.

Recently, I reached that birthday.

I am now the ancient and decrepit age my mother was when I was born. I do not have two or three children. I don’t even have one. I am, at least, married, which is a comfort, and I know that we’re being sensible about the timing of children. I also know that never once have I thought that my mother was actually “too old” to be my mother, and that I am certain that I will not be “too old” to be a proper mother to my kids even if they don’t make an appearance for a few more years.

Still, I can’t help remembering with chagrin how very much I was determined to do this differently. It’s not a milestone I ever thought I’d pass. Funny how things change, isn’t it?

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