As much as I tried not to let motherhood rock my world, it kind of did. The list of things that I swore I would do/never do was long and the list of things that I have done that I have broken from that list? Well, it's pretty long too. There are a ton of things I just "didn't get" before I had a kid of my own… particularly before I had a toddler of my own, because toddlers are definitely a much different beast than babies. Lovable and sweet, but still a little beast-like at times. I was thinking the other day about just how different life was before I was a mom and as I was remembering the former luxury of lengthy, leisurely showers, I thought I would write down a few. Things that used to be cool before I had kids - things like going out to eat and Daylight Savings time, among others.
1. THEN: Going out to dinner was the best!
Before I had kids, going out to dinner meant trying cool new spots with adventurous cuisine. It meant happy hour drinks and dessert afterward, and it meant having a relaxing night off from cooking and doing dishes.
NOW: Going out to dinner kind of sucks.
Going out to dinner means finding a restaurant that has high chairs and things on the menu that my child will actually eat. It means packing a bunch of extra snacks and distractions to fill the time between placing our order and when our food actually arrives. Drinks and dessert are a thing of the past - we've gotta get home for bedtime. And honestly, it's almost more relaxing to just stay home and cook dinner a lot of times.
2. THEN: I heart Daylight Savings Time.
Spring daylight savings time was always a downer because it meant "losing" an hour of sleep, but fall daylight savings was the best. That morning when our clocks changed and I got an extra hour of sleep was glorious.
NOW: I hate you Daylight Savings Time.
Daylight savings time awesomeness is in reverse now. I LOATHE the fall time change. While it may seem like I'm getting an extra hour of sleep, kids don't see it that way. They will still want to wake up at the same time, which will technically be earlier, and they will probably want to continue to do so for quite awhile, which means less sleep for parents, not more. Spring daylight savings time means more sleep... because it's the opposite. I'm too tired to explain it.
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3. THEN: Dressing for fashion.
Back in the day, if it was cute, I wore it. Getting dressed was pretty much that simple. "This white, dry-clean-only, silk chiffon blouse would go so great with my new pencil skirt!" Yeah. Those are the kind of things my pre-child self thought about.
NOW: Dressing for function.
Now when I'm choosing my clothing, my internal dialogue is a little different. It's more like, "Is this shirt dark enough to cover child-induced stains and be thrown easily in the washing machine when my kid wipes boogers on it?" This is real life people.
4. THEN: Heels are cute!
Wearing heels used to be the best way to instantly elevate an outfit and you didn't have to give much thought to the activities you would need to be doing in them, because how hard is it to walk around in heels looking chic?
NOW: Heels are freaking dangerous!
Now, wearing heels is the best way to look like a fool/break your neck as you carry a child on one hip and 28 pounds of child gear on your other hip.
5. THEN: Nap time was so simple.
Naps were all about taking a quick snooze on the couch on a lazy Sunday afternoon and the only person I had to worry about getting to sleep was myself.
NOW: Nap time is a fiasco.
Nowadays, naps are about a checklist of 20 things you must do in order to get your child to sleep so that you can have an hour of solitude in your day. It's really only a 50/50 crapshoot even then, because apparently toddlers think they are too cool for naps.
6. THEN: Treat yo self!
Before I had kids, eating a bowl of ice cream after dinner was a nice way to indulge at the end of a long day.
NOW: Sharing is caring… even if it's not willingly.
Now that I have a child, eating a bowl of ice cream means I'll probably get two bites by the time my kid commandeers the bowl. And if I don't want her eating ice cream in the first place, then I'll probably just have to forgo it all together, because once they see that carton, it's all over.
7. THEN: Date night was fun and relaxing.
Going on a date used to mean getting dressed up in a leisurely fashion and then heading out for a fun and relaxing time with my husband.
NOW: Date night…SO much work.
Going on a date means that the stars have perfectly aligned and you aren't too tired to go out and you've found someone who wants to babysit. Then it means prepping all the things for the babysitter that your child will need while you are on said date and then having two seconds left to throw on a clean shirt and some lipstick. You may look a bit like a hot mess, but at least you're on a date!
-By Lauren Hartmann
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