Dearest Pre-Mom Self,
I hope you’re kicking back with a People magazine on the couch as you read this (as you should be). As I remember, the only stressors you have in life are whether the dog is fed and the cat’s litter box is clean. Don’t get me wrong, those are important things, but you just wait. In the future you won’t even know the dog’s name and you will probably forget that you own a cat. True story.
Let your husband go to happy hour or dinner with coworkers or friends. As a matter of fact, go out on date nights every night! Sleep in on the weekends. Lay in bed and wonder how you’re going to spend the weekend.
Enjoy your free time in the bathroom. Take your People magazine with you for a leisurely sit on the bathroom throne. There’s zero rush and no one nagging you, so why speed through the process? Trust me on this. You don’t have to answer questions about Minecraft or the weather or hear screaming from the other room, so enjoy it now momma. (That is unless your husband pesters you about Minecraft or screams from the other room while you’re on the toilet. Then you have problems, sweet thing.)
Enjoy just how easy dinner and meal planning are right now. Your husband is unlikely to fling his peas at you or tell you how awful dinner looks. He probably also won’t say toilet words at the table just to make you angry. If he passes gas and giggles at the table, that will be the least of your concerns. He’ll usually eat whatever you make and most of the time, he’ll even compliment you. What a keeper.
When you sleep, relish in the sweet dreams of sugar plums and unicorns. Enjoy the fact that the only thing bothering you at night is your husband’s snoring and the kitty cat kneading on your pillow. On a bad night your dog needs has to go outside at 2am because he ate something he shouldn’t have. That’s just a small precursor for what the future holds.
In the morning, enjoy showering by yourself and getting ready without anyone hanging onto your legs. Get dressed in your cute outfits (that you still have money for) and drive to work in your car free of crumbs and vomit smell. You can listen to whatever you want on the radio. Jam out to old school rap if you want. There’s no one in your backseat. YET.
I don’t mean to be Debbie Downer, but this is all going to change once you have a baby. Or babies.
You won’t have time to kick back on the couch with a People magazine once you have a baby. You’ll sleep with spit up on your yoga pants that you’ve worn for three days straight. The People magazine will be laying on top of you completely unread.
You will bargain with your husband about happy hours and dinners with coworkers. “You go to happy hour for 1 1/2 hours and I get a nap tomorrow!’ Sadly, you find yourself bargaining for most things– even showers.
Sleep is hilariously awful. No matter how tired you are, you’re somehow sleeping with one eye open making sure the baby is still breathing. And as the baby gets older, there’s teething, bad dreams, middle of the night diaper changes, bedwetting, and illness to keep you awake at night. Yay!
You will start resenting your husband for the amount of time he spends in the bathroom. It may not be any more time than he spent in the bathroom pre-baby, but it’s somehow now an eternity. You find yourself asking him, “WHERE ARE YOU GOING? YOU’RE NOT GOING TO THE BATHROOM, ARE YOU?”
Meal planning is usually whatever’s in the fridge. If lucky, friends brought over food when the baby was a newborn. After that, dinner may be whatever lunch meat is in the fridge slapped between two stale pieces of bread. Delivery is your friend. This will get better once the kids get a little older, but dinner planning during the baby fog is virtually nonexistent.
Survival is the name of the game these days. It’s totally different than the pre-kid life, isn’t it?
Don’t get too upset about losing your freedoms and independence that you had pre-baby, though. While it takes some time to adjust, there are no words to explain everything that you gain.
The smiles, hugs, cuddles, and love are real. Your kids don’t love anyone or anything more than they love you. And that alone is worth every second of lost bathroom time.
Hang in there, momma. You’ll see.