We all know that “mommyhood” is wonderful and we love our little munchkins more than anything in the world! That being said, while the rewards are great, there are definitely a lot of sacrifices involved. There are many things that we took for granted before kids that we miss now that these options are gone forever (or at least until the baby leaves for college)!
1. Staying up late / Sleeping in
I’ve written about this many times and it was by far the hardest adjustment for me to make. I am a night owl which by default means I’m NOT a morning person. However, somebody forgot to mention this important fact to my kids!
2. Going to the bathroom alone
Kids could care less if we are in the bathroom with them…in fact, mine prefer it that way. However, they don’t really understand that adults like a little privacy. As soon as I walk into the bathroom, it turns into a big potty party. Everybody seems to want to be in there with mommy. If for some reason they don’t actually follow me in, I am needed immediately for an emergency. Usually the emergency is that my 3 year old wants to watch TV or needs her hundredth cup of milk.
3. Eating a meal without getting up 5 times
If you’re a mom, you are probably all too familiar with this routine. As soon as you sit down and start to enjoy your dinner, somebody needs something to drink. You get the drink and sit back down, but seconds later you hear the sound of a fork falling to the floor. You get another fork and sit back down and actually manage to get a piece of chicken on your fork. However, now someone needs a napkin and as you walk back to the table with it, you’re informed that it should be wet. By the time you finally sit down again, at least one child is finished and wants more oranges, strawberries, or the miscellaneous fruit of the day. It’s advisable just to carry your wine with you as you make these trips back and forth…if you can’t eat, at least you can drink!
4. Having a grown up conversation
Typical conversation in my house:
Hubby: You won’t believe what happened at work today!
Hubby: Well, I heard that…
Keira (in her inside voice, which is a quiet yell): DADDY, DO YOU WANT TO SEE ME DO SOMETHING REALLY COOL?
Hubby: Sure sweetheart, in just a second. So anyway, the boss came to me and said…
Keira: DADDY, COME IN MY ROOM. I HAVE TO SHOW YOU SOMETHING!
Me: Keira, just give daddy a minute, okay?
Ashling: Mommy, I just saw this commercial on TV and it’s this toy that I REALLY want and it flies and it comes in pink and blue and purple and…(now I’m zoning out)
Me (to hubby): Just wait until they go to bed to tell me!
We have this conversation a lot. The only problem is that by bedtime, we’ve forgotten what we were actually going to talk about.
5. Discussing any topic you want
Never try to talk about something you don’t want the kids to hear. The lower your voice is, the quicker they will run to you and ask “What are you talking about???”
6. Watching the news
I pretty much get all my news online now. There are just too many things that I don’t want to have to explain!
7. Taking a bath
Before I had kids, I used to take baths all the time. I’d fill the tub with steaming hot water, grab a magazine, a glass of red, and just relax! Those days were awesome! Now if I even think about turning on the water, I am immediately needed for something urgent (you know, REALLY urgent…like finding a missing toy). Even worse, someone will want to jump in the tub with me, toys and all! It’s just so much easier to take a shower.
8. Leaving the house in under an hour
You know exactly what I’m talking about. First you have to get the kids ready which includes teeth brushing, hair fixing and dressing them appropriately…appropriately being the key word. Then it’s time to pack snacks and juice boxes, backup clothes for little ones and wait while they find just the right toy to bring in the car (even if it’s a five minute trip). By now it’s been awhile since they had breakfast so they’ll want something else to eat, but not the snack food we’re bringing in the car. If you have to be somewhere at a specific time, don’t even think about being on time unless you’ve given yourself an hour more than you think you’ll actually need!
9. “Running” into the grocery store
When you have kids, a “quick trip” into the grocery store is more elusive than fairies and unicorns! First, you have to find the race car shopping cart. Then you have to spend a few more minutes calming the crying toddler when those special carts are all taken. Now it’s time to swing by the bakery for the free cookies and of course your kids will need to use the public restroom…probably twice. I often find myself wondering if we can last just one more day on our almost empty gallon of milk. This is also why I always have a supply of emergency frozen pizza and emergency wine (two things a good mother is never without)!
10. Planning something last minute
This kind of ties in with#8 & 9. I went to many a last minute concert, happy hour with friends or movie…before kids. Today you’d have to find a last minute babysitter, about as elusive as the previously mentioned fairies and unicorns. Even then, it has to be really worth it because you could buy a new pair of shoes with all that money that you’re spending on the sitter!
11. Reading books
This basically applies to reading in general. Before I had my first child, I subscribed to the newspaper and a couple of magazines. Three months post-baby, I took a good look at the enormous piles of reading material in the corner and realized that I needed to cancel my subscriptions before I ended up on one of those hoarder shows. If this is you, just toss them all. Despite what you think, you will not EVER get around to reading them.
12. Listening to “your” songs
I am working everyday to train my kids to like my music and it actually works occasionally. However, the second we get in the car I start hearing special requests for music from Tangled, The Lion King or anything else Disney related. Don’t get me wrong, I love all those songs but sometimes I really just want to listen to a some Pitbull!
13. Relaxing by the pool or at the beach
Pre-kids, you sat by the pool or at the beach for hours, relaxing with your favorite cocktails and a magazine (this is back when you still subscribed). You just went in the water if you were hot and even then it was probably only for a few minutes. Those days are over…now you spend the majority of your time in the water making sure your children don’t get lost at sea or eaten by sharks. When not in the water, you’re helping your kids build sand castles (which is actually fun, but only for about the first 20 minutes or so). Those cocktails? Well, they’ve been replaced by juice boxes and bottled water!
Lucky for you, kids can be pretty stinkin’ cute so it’s all worthwhile. Eventually they even grow enough so that you can relax a little more, sleep late and maybe even listen to your music again. Just remember that when it’s 30 minutes into dinnertime and you still haven’t gotten that first bite to eat!