By Clay Reed

After Denise Duhamel

Having a child changes a relationship,
at least that’s what our friends with children
have told us several times.
“It changes the dynamic!” they say,
acting as if they are letting us in
on some kind of joke.
What they really mean is that we will argue
more than we already do. I tell my wife
that things won’t change that drastically.
We are just adding a new team member, I say.
“What about us?” she asks, “will we still make time
for each other?” I tell her of course we will,
we will still do all the things we do now,
watch movies, have date night, cook dinner,
we will have plenty of time. She seems
satisfied with my answer, but I know it won’t be long
until she brings it up again. “Don’t listen to our friends,”
I say, “We are more in love than they are anyways.”
She smiles the same way she does
whenever I make the same joke,
which makes me wonder if I have said that before.
She must feel it too, I think to myself.
Just by talking about it, the dynamic
has already changed.


After Denise Duhamel

Having a daughter has changed almost every facet of my life. I used to spend my free time how I wanted (video games), but now my daugher dictates every free minute. I have traded movies I enjoy (Star Wars) for something more age appropriate (Disney). Instead of my usual reading material (anything science fiction or fantasy), I now read my daughter’s favorite authors (Dr. Seuss) almost exclusively. My body has ran on a strict diet (Mountain Dew and Hostess snacks) for years, but my daughter has converted me to her meal plan (steamed broccoli and carrots). I thought these changes would only affect my quality of life negatively, and I have never been more wrong.

The push
After Denise Duhamel

The hospital called after hours of waiting and said this is it it’s
now or never
I grabbed the keys and the hospital bag and we hurried to the car
I started the
engine and drove like a maniac in the snowy streets because I
didn’t want to
miss our chance we parked and checked in and the nurse put
us in the
best room on the third floor the room your friend said was the
best one
and they gave you a gown and told you to get comfortable
it was going
to take a while you asked if I was nervous I said no but
I was lying
I asked you the same and you said no and I believed you
you never
get nervous it’s something I admire about you I ask if you
want to
watch TV you say sure and cops is on one of your favorite
shows we
watch until a doctor comes and hooks you up so that the
pain won’t
be so intense it’s the middle of the night so we try to get
some sleep
when we wake up it is still dark but it’s time says the nurse
time to
push so you push she takes her time coming out she sure has
a lot
of hair said the nurse and you smile between contractions
one last
push and she is here and in the course of one night everything                              
has changed         

About the Author:

clay reed

Clay Reed is studying creative writing at Utah State University in Logan Utah. This is his first published work.