Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Finding Balance and Other Magical Things

The easiest thing about adjusting to motherhood was sacrificing my social life. Because let me be honest, I am lame. Like deep down in my soul, I have always been an old lady who just wants to watch my Wheel of Fortune in peace and get to bed early with my ten cats. It isn't that I'm anti-social--I love hanging out with friends, I promise. I just value all things low key, quiet, and over before bedtime. And if people wanted to hang out somewhere intimate and peaceful, and wrap it up before I got sleepy? Brilliant. But that rarely happens (at least not during your early 20s). Going out with friends sort of stresses me out. It is expensive (especially in NYC and DC, where I spent most of my post-college days/pre-baby days) for one thing. And plans never seemed to even start until 10:00 most nights, if that. Way past my bedtime. Way past it. And then it was so loud and crowded; and awkward; and hard to find parking or cabs; and cold or wet; and why? I just never really got the point. I am missing some kind of going-out gene. I did it, but I didn't enjoy it like everyone else seemed to. I never understood why it couldn't be cool to just have a dinner party, rent a movie and call it a night. But guess who else likes to go to bed early? Babies! Guess who else likes routines and warm, quiet places? Babies! It is like we are soul mates, me and babies.

The easiest thing about adjusting to fatherhood for Cork (I'm gonna go out on a limb here) was sacrificing his (obviously non-existent) thrifting and crafting hobbies*. The funny thing is, none of his friends ever pressured him to go to thrift stores or execute ill-fated craft projects before he had kids, so (as you can imagine) it was a relatively seamless transition for him. {Although, I have to wonder, what would happen if they had pressured such activities? Would he have gone along? Would he have regretted it, especially when he was older and wiser and less afraid to say, "no, thanks!"? Was he ever afraid to say, "no, thanks!" or was that just me?}

But I forget sometimes that my husband is not so lame. He thrives on the chaos of loud noises and late nights and lots of friends. And he misses all that. And I want him to be happy and to be able to do these things. Just like he wants me to be happy and to be able to wander around thrift stores and waste money at craft stores on projects that will come out not-quite right. But we hardly have time to do things together. We have a long streak of failed date nights, because someone got sick (Mom, Dad, kids, sitters, you name it, someone is always sick), or something equally frustrating but blameless. How are we supposed to prioritize doing things apart AND together? I think we need to. Perhaps he can start taking one girl (I should clarify, one of OUR baby girls) to a sports bar to watch the game (because there is always a game...always. these games, they never stop) while I take the other one shopping for things we don't really need (but were such a great deal!).  And have a date night when we get back? I'll go ahead and file that one under: things I can do once I start showering regularly. You know, come to think of it, technically, once a week is regular. So there! Problem solved, let's make it happen.

*Although, I have to brag, Cork did hem the new curtains this weekend. It was hot. I'm super impressed.


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