College reunion. I gasped when I saw Rhonda, who had a bump the size of a watermelon. I had absolutely no idea. We had exchanged sporadic emails (including what to wear to the reunion–she did say a summer dress but didn’t say it was because nothing else would fit) but I had not seen her in person for six months. She was wrapping up her second trimester.
I had long categorized Rhonda as someone who didn’t want to have kids. A tad of an introvert, when the conversation turned to kids I would catch her purse her lips and ruminate privately with that quadruple processing brain of hers. I always thought she wasn’t interested or that she and her husband couldn’t afford it, given their steadfast commitment to the not-for-profit sector. Having a child was selfish, when there were all these people that needed their help.
Oh but I was wrong. Or they had a change of heart. Either way I was completely flabbergasted. Later in the evening, someone else mentioned another classmate who was pregnant. This one had always said explicitly that she never wanted kids. “….The father is…John?” I asked quietly, because last I saw her almost eight years ago, she was afraid he was having an extramarital affair. I was assured John was still in the picture.
Okay, okay, so we move on. We reconcile. We change our minds. We…I mean, everyone, but me…and the spattering of us with barren wombs, holding down this fort that everyone has long abandoned. Rhonda for sure I thought was part of Platoon Sans. She proved me wrong.
Of course I’m sure these assumptions are mutual. I’m sure Rhonda assumes I’ll be single for life. I’m sure all those classmates do. Not like they ever asked me directly. Unless….
What do they know that I don’t know?