I would not change this life for anything, but sometimes I find myself dreaming of my life before having a baby...basically doing whatever I wanted, when I wanted to. I look at expectant moms and I want to yell "sleep in! sleep in for as long as you can!" as they walk around completely clueless to the life they are about to leave behind...
Here is my list of a few things that you can no longer do (easily) once you have a baby that no one told me about:
- You can no longer leave the house past baby's bedtime (for us this means 7:30pm). After bedtime, we are home. There are no dinner's out, movies, or trips to the bar on a whim - the exception being nights with a babysitter which you need to plan ahead for and of course pay for and with that, all spontaneaty is lost.
- You are now stuck with only eating at kid friendly restaurants. I try very hard not to be the parents dragging my child to non-kid friendly restaurants where he will inevitably have a complete meltdown. We are now regulated to a few restaurants and our days of fine dining seem to have ended abruptly.
- You will miss sleeping in, waking up whenever you feel like it, leisurely drinking coffee in the morning, and thinking about what you might do that day. That is no longer possible, your days are now completely planned out and controlled, by a small child. The words leisurely and sleeping are no longer in your vocabulary.
- Napping during the day is a thing of the past. You nap when they nap if you ever want to nap. And you wake up when they wake up.
- Showering when you want is now a thing of the past. Showers are quickly taken in under 5 minutes either right after bedtime or before baby awakes in the morning. Showers while they are awake are about 2 minutes long and include a heavy dose of guilt as well.
- Tired is now a constant feeling and not something you only used to feel sometimes during the week before having a baby. We walk around like zombies some days, barely talking to one another just going through the motions until we can fall asleep again. Taking care of a baby, especially a mobile one, is completely and utterly exhausting. And if your baby wakes up even once during the night, you mine as well not even go to work the next day - life is miserable.
- Getting out of the house takes twice as long and you will always forget something. I run around like a crazy person before leaving the house...grabbing everything in sight I think we might need. A quick trip to the grocery store is now an hour long ordeal complete with a diaper blowout right as baby is strapped into the car seat.
- Being alone...something so simple that happened so often before a baby is now extremely hard to come by and revered upon as so special. Me time used to be all the time before baby, now its something I have to plan for days in a advance to pull off successfully.
While my days are now monopolized by a one year old, being his Mom is by far better than any date night, nap, or shower...Again...I wouldn't change a thing...except maybe an extra hour of sleep each day.