I know I got you imagining some sweet nudie calendar or video with a whole lot of mom body, but that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about things that you want to hear more about. Things that, as a mom, either seem so far gone from your life or too far in the future to even seem possible. You know, like sleeping through the night, or sleeping off a hangover, or sleeping for two hours in the middle of the day or… did I just mention sleeping three times? My sleep situation is golden by the way. But, there are other things- reading a book whenever you want, leaving the house without a battle about shoes, cleaning your house and having it stay clean for more than 20 minutes, going out for a drink with your husband without paying a babysitter half of what you spend, spontaneously doing anything, attending events after 7:00pm, leaving your children at home alone, etc. The trouble is, these things are just not going to happen if you are a mom of young ones, so you gotta get your kicks another way. By living vicariously through others.
There are two good groups to observe/become friends with/ grill relentlessly during a one-time encounter. One group is people in their twenties who don’t have kids and the other is parents with older children.
Here’s a fun game: ask a twenty-something what they did last weekend. Chances are, it involved a night of drinking whatever wherever they wanted, with whoever they wanted, for however long they wanted, eating some kind of food item out in public without any interruption or stress, sleeping for some unbelievably luxurious amount of time, and some other enjoyable and unnecessary activity that didn’t involve keeping someone alive and safe. In a nutshell, it was totally awesome.
Whatever your relationship with the twenty-something, it’s important to ask for details until the point at which it becomes socially awkward, or you decide to be honest about what you are doing. For example: What kind of drink did you have? What did you order that you didn’t have to share with a 3 year-old? What were you doing at 7pm? Did you feel like the night was just beginning? What poor choices did you make that had zero consequences? What deliciously crappy fast food did you eat at 3am? EXACTLY what time did you wake up? How did you decide what to do for the day?
Why is this a good idea? Two reasons: hearing about these escapades makes you truly appreciate the time before kids and it also makes you grateful you have kids. Do I regret a single second I slept in? No ma’am. Do I miss getting out? Yes. But I have a tiny boy that wakes me up every morning with a sleepy sweet two-tooth smile and mussed up kitten hair. And my daughter and him remind me all the time that during my freedom days I didn’t even know how terribly lonely I was for them.
And there is light on the other side too! Ever watched some parents with kids over the age of 8 from the foggy lens of new-momhood? They just have this ease. Like they aren’t anticipating a tantrum, or bedtime. They say messed up shit like “That’s just the best time, when they are little,” and “It goes so fast. Enjoy EVERY minute of it.” Shameless liars. I can’t wait til I can do that! I’m going to work all those future new parents like a pro. The glory days are coming!