I could not be happier. Since Paige was born, my hubby and I have realised just how empty our lives were – and I don’t mean that we were wondering around aimlessly, I mean that we thought we knew what love was…then BAM, Paige arrived and we realised that what we knew was just a fraction of what was actually possible. Cool hey.
That said, being a mom is tough. Never-mind the endless little chores and responsibilities that come with having a kid, but I feel the ability to have a semi-normal social life slipping away (at an alarming rate I might add).
I acknowledge that it is most definitely (partly?) my own fault, and I am sure most moms out there can relate, whether you are a full time mom or a working mom – it is tough going either way.
I am extremely lucky that I have a hands-on, fully capable husband because we both work full time and I would be nuttier than a fruitcake if had to do it all by myself like some single parents out there (gold stars for all of you by the way).
The point is though, that I feel my social-butterfly self crawling back into its cocoon and I am finding it really hard to claw my way back out. Partly because by the time the weekend comes I am pretty flopping (I was thinking of a stronger word) exhausted and just want to veg on the couch in my pjs, and partly because none of our immediate friends have kids.
It is actually quite difficult, and lonely at times, to be the only couple in our immediate group who have reached the ‘family’ stage of our lives. Fair enough, it’s not their problem.
The challenge I face is the age old, well known fact that if people ask you to join them over again and you decline (for whatever reason) more than a socially acceptable amount of times, they eventually stop asking. The thing is, that my reason for declining is a 17 month little tot who demands majority of my time, and if she is sick or hurt or fighting her sleep routine then I am sorry, but I can’t come out to play – no matter how badly I want to ditch the baby and escape the house for a few hours.
People without kids generally don’t understand this. Not because they are insensitive or uncaring, but because that isn’t their life and while they can sympathize, they cannot empathize. They didn’t sign up for this…yet.
When Paige was still a baby it was eezy-peezy. Put her in the car chair and she would fall asleep on the way and most likely only wake for a bottle, then go back to sleep and we could stick her in the corner or under the table and nothing would wake up that little monkey. Now though, she is a walking, sort-of-talking, little whirlwind who needs to be constantly watched and entertained. She is chasing cats and climbing up stairs and being a normal, curious little terror…um, I mean toddler.
Last minute plans that were once no problem are a thing of the past – it takes time to get yourself and a toddler ready to go anywhere. Have you ever tried changing a nappy on a tot that just wants to run around butt-naked after bath time, and who kicks and screams when you pick her up to lie her down so that you can put the new nappy and pants back on – it’s so much fun (note the sarcasm). If you are leaving the house for more than half an hour with toddler in tow then you need to pack a bag. A lot can happen in 30 minutes – cranky ‘cos she’s hungry/needs a nappy change/needs a nap/spit up and needs a new shirt/is teething and needs Panado…etc etc.
Oh the glamorous life of being a mom. My grown-up thoughts are constantly being invaded by little minion concerns that require planning to factor in when naps, snacks and nappy changes need to occur during the outing.
BUT, please don’t take any of this as me complaining! That is most definitely not the case and if given the choice over again, knowing what I know now, I would still choose a life that has Paige in it.
All I’m saying is that it is hard work raising a little being, as any parent can agree, and it is also a challenge to maintain friendships with people who are going out for drinks on the town, when all I can afford (time and money) is a coffee or lunch date in the cafe down the road. How do I catch up with what my friends are up to you ask?…I stalk them on Facebook during my lunch half hour at work.
My current social life is borderline non-existent.