Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Honeymoon Period - revisiting life before kids

Tomorrow is Friday, and you know what that means.
Date morning.

We are still at the stage where we feel giddy when the children are at school and we are off together somewhere - sometimes naked, usually not - having fun and behaving like grownups.

It still feels like a luxury to sit quietly on a Friday morning and sip our coffee and read the paper and order whatever we want for breakfast without having to share it or cut it up into little pieces or wait for it to be cold before eating it or sometimes giving up and not even ordering what we *really* want at all because it would be setting a bad example.

That's right: I still feel naughty if all I have for breakfast is waffles and coffee. I keep thinking to myself "you need more protein. Have an egg. Do the right thing. For the love of all that is good, think of the sugar crash later." But not on my Friday. No, on Friday, I steel myself to do something because I am a grownup dammit, and because I SAID SO.

Because that's a valid reason, right?

We're new at this, you see.

And you people out there who don't have children, you just Don't Understand what the hell I am talking about. I live a life where every meal, every phone call, ever visit to the potty, is rife with contemplation and forced enthusiasm and restraint the likes of which you have never known. Parents have no privacy unless someone is locked in or out. You cannot eat without sharing - forced or otherwise - or worse, being studied and fixed with a petulant, watery gaze while you try to enjoy the food that you ordered with no intention of sharing. There is a constant level of noise that is ever present, that you just some how, at some point, learn to tune out. Even during sex. Especially during sex.

Everything you purchase has them in mind, from food to incidentals to worrying about what they will have to do without so that you can buy a new pair of underwear for the first time in 6 years, and deciding that you can't buy anything too sexy because the kids are always playing with the clean laundry and you don't want them playing with sexy lingerie because OH MY GOD IT WILL RUIN YOUR DAUGHTERS SELF IMAGE AND YOUR SONS RESPECT FOR WOMEN. Or maybe you are really worried that your son will try it on and then refuse to take it off. Or your daughter will tell everyone at school that your underwear is smaller than hers. Or all of the above.

So you buy the 5 pack of cotton Hanes at Walmart, and you just remove the door to the bathroom entirely so no one's fingers get pinched, and you eventually forget what pancake syrup tastes like and convince yourself that homemade strawberry jam is just as good - no, BETTER - on waffles, and sugar cereal made your tummy hurt and your teeth rot, and wheat tastes way better than white bread - even the crusts.

Especially the crusts.

Which is why going out to breakfast and ignoring my eggs whilst dipping my hot bacon in puddles of artifically maple-flavored and -colored corn syrup feels DECADENT and I am going to enjoy every last minute of it. And at 2pm when I am shaking and I have a headache and I feel vaguely nauseous don't bother saying "I told you so" because I KNOW THAT ALREADY AND I DON'T CARE IT WAS WORTH IT.

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