Before Kids vs After Kids
The other day a completely ridiculous Facebook post from 7 years ago popped up in my newsfeed. It was absurd. You won’t believe it. Brace yourself.
“Going to the movies.”
Um. What? That’s it. That the message that 27 year old me wanted to communicate with the world. There wasn’t even an exclamation point. I was just all casual about it like it was no big deal. Sigh.
Today it would read: “I put on real clothes, did my hair, and my husband agreed to stay home with the kids (after I indicated I was on the verge of a breakdown) so I could go to a movie. I’m probably just going to eat a cheeseburger in my car in this grocery store parking lot while wasting two hours on Facebook since there’s nothing good out right now. It’s going to be the best night of my month. I can’t wait!”
I seriously did that once and I have no regrets. It was glorious. Of course I didn’t announce it on Facebook because I doubt everyone would find that as thrilling as I did.
This got me thinking about how much my life has changed since becoming a mother. Yes, my life is richer. Yes, I laugh more often. Yes, my kids are my absolute favorite people on this earth and I can’t imagine my life without their sweet smiles.
But let’s talk about the other stuff.
Before kids: “It’s 5 PM. Let’s grab dinner and a movie after work.”
After kids: “Let’s plan a date for three weeks from now so we have time to get a babysitter. Oh no, she said no. Let’s ask our backup. Oh, she said no too. Maybe we should just bring the kids. Good news! My neighbor’s sister’s daughter is eighteen and can babysit. It’s $12 an hour so let’s skip the movie and just do dinner to save a little money.”
Before kids: I am impeccably dressed.
After kids: My kids are impeccably dressed. I look like I’ve worn the same shirt for three days. I have.
Before kids: 2 hours of shopping at my favorite clothing store by myself and for myself.
After kids: 2 hours of shopping at Target. I leave with coffee, school supplies, pajamas for the kids, and home decor that I don’t need.
Before kids: I don’t drink coffee.
After kids: Two cups of coffee before 6 AM.
Before kids: Long conversations with friends over drinks after work.
After kids: An “are you still alive?” text once a week to check in.
Before kids: Clean car.
After kids: I could live off the food on the floor of my car for two weeks and there is an unidentified smell coming from the back.
Before kids: I fantasize about quitting my job and moving to Italy to eat cheese and pastries all day.
After kids: I fantasize about a nap.
Before kids: Up until 2 AM eating pizza and hanging out with friends.
After kids: Up every 2 hours soothing a teething baby.
Before kids: Four vacations a year including a girl’s road trip, weekend in NYC, 3 days in Vegas, and a beach trip.
After kids: My husband refers to my shower as a mini vacation. It’s only 15 minutes.
Before kids: I celebrate finding my favorite makeup brand on sale.
After kids: I celebrate someone pooping in the toilet.
Before kids: A new purse every season.
After kids: What purse? I can’t possibly carry diapers, wipes, spare clothes, snacks, and an assortment of toys in a purse. I carry a tote bag and it weighs 300 lbs.
Before kids: Dirty jokes make me laugh.
After kids: Finding my daughter in her crib with a diaper explosion that literally covers every inch of white space makes me laugh. (That happened. And yes I laughed. What’s the point of crying over it?)
Before kids: I cry when I stub my toe hard.
After kids: I still cry when I stub my toe. I also cry when I watch The Lion King. Or Frozen. Or that ASPCA commercial.
Before kids: Sunglasses because they look cool.
After kids: Sunglasses because I don’t want to scare anyone with the bags under my eyes.
Before kids: Arguing with a client about why another round of creative revisions is going to cost them another $150.
After kids: Arguing with my two year old about why she can’t ride our cocker spaniel like a horse.
Before kids: I car dance.
After kids: I sing The Wheels on the Bus 223 times in the car.
Before kids: Spotless house.
After kids: I spend 3 hours cleaning. 20 minutes later it’s back to looking like I’m a hoarder with a toy addiction.
Before kids: Wine at night.
After kids: Wine at night.
Any other differences you’d add? I’d love to hear them!