Phone Conversations with friends who don’t have Kids
I think before I get to the main topic of this story I need to illustrate how my sophisticated and user-friendly life was before children.
Up at 7am; at work by 8 wearing a clean and fashionable outfit; eat a leisurely breakfast at my computer; varied and interesting challenges in the day all which could be achieved without fuss from my desk and with praise from my boss if I achieve on time; lunch with colleagues at 1; home at 4:30; wine at 5pm; catch the news at 6pm; a lazy, lovingly planned and prepared dinner/movie/exciting night out; bed by 10pm; exotic sex and lights out at 11pm for a full 8 hours uninterrupted sleep.
This is me now.
At work 24 hours but generally out of bed by 6am for no good reason other than my baby thinking its a good idea; 9 times out of 10 I forget to have breakfast; wear spewed on nightie til its baby’s nap time around 9:30am then shower and get changed into whatever clean(ish) clothes I can see on my floordrobe; lunch is my toddlers leftovers, usually half a vegemite sandwich and discarded apple; wine starts at midday; newstime has fallen into a hellish 2 hour block from 5-7pm of bath the kids, feed the kids, stop the kids fighting, get kids dressed, teeth cleaned and in to bed; dinner is whatever I pulled out of the freezer and felt motivated to cook between the chaos that is the aforementioned 2 hours; nobody praises me for any of my extraordinarily boring daytime/houseduty achievements; I fall asleep on the couch by 8:30pm and am woken by my drool hitting my arm; time for bed – I’m sorry, SEX?? Really honey, is it that time of the week already?? Lights out at 10pm and then I am on call all night for no good reason other than my baby thinking its a good idea.
Now I had a girlfriend (sans children) who used to commute in an hour long drive to and fro work each day and it was convenient for her to call me at 5pm in her car and “catch-up” for the drive home (she always had fantastic weekend plans and you could never catch her when it was baby’s nap time when you could relax on the couch for a chat).
She would inevitably call as the bath was running and I was wrestling with my baby, trying to stay clean whilst juggling him out of an outfit which had his dinner all down the front and more often than not a dirty nappy that had to be dealt with before his water adventures. Once this was achieved (awesomely I might add with one hand and phone in the other) and baby was deposited in the bath, I generally had about 10 minutes with two hands BUT had to stop baby from drinking the bath water, tipping the contents of the bath all over me and the floor, scoop his dinner off his clothes and transfer to the washing machine. I also had to try to keep the dog out of the bath and then when finished (again awesomely with one hand) get baby out of the bath, dried and into a nappy, dressed in a sleep suit with impossible snap-fasteners, then go and try to cook dinner for myself and my husband for his shift break with baby on my hip only to be surgically removed before his bedtime at 7pm.
My girlfriend would open conversation with, “what have you been up to”? or “have you got any news/been up to anything interesting”? or “what are you doing on the weekend”? as per my pre-baby life. She just didn’t get that I have been up to exactly the scenario above, there is no news unless you count my newly achieved craftmaking skills at playgroup or mammoth housework marathon, and my weekend days might be recognisable from groundhog day when my baby starts school.
She would complain that I often sounded “distracted” and said that she was beginning to feel “insignificant” because I didn’t make uninterrupted time for her when she rang me. When we caught up in the flesh she would request that my baby not be there because I always had one eye on him and she felt unimportant. She booked lavish restaurants that I could no longer afford on a single wage and made the bookings for 8:30pm like we used to. She rolled her eyes when I started yawning about half an hour into dinner and grumbled that things weren’t the “same” as they were . Needless to say this friendship didn’t last – we haven’t spoken for nearly two years now and the ironic thing is that she is pregnant herself now.
I hope with all fingers crossed that my phone rings when her bubs is born and it’s her telling me that she now realises that in fact, I haven’t changed at all, I never did, it’s just that my life has – I am exactly the same girl I was before kids, I still love her just the same – I just have different things to worry about now
’til next time
PS – I was just kidding about drinking wine from midday. Its usually starts at 9am