Before having a baby, you always hear things like “sleep while you can” or (the opposite) “have fun while you still can!” I expected the no-sleep thing and I expected the financial burden of daycare and diapers, but here are a few things that I didn’t expect to miss once I became a mom.
Driving Straight Home From Work
For years I took for granted the simple task of driving home after work. Now, my standard routine involves about an extra half hour (on a good day) of shuttling around in rush-hour traffic to pick Iris up from school. Before becoming a mom, I would get off work and have the luxury of driving straight home, to the gym, or even better – to a bar for happy hour. Fast forward to being a parent and now any extra stop means I don’t start cooking dinner until later than normal, meaning who knows when the food will be ready, meaning I have a cranky kid who will likely be up past her bedtime.
Not Having to Hide My Trash
I can’t throw away an old Happy Meal toy or stale cookie without Iris finding it in our garbage can. If there’s anything that we need to get rid of that Iris might be interested in, I have to hide it beneath the coffee grounds and banana peels. And don’t forget about the bathroom trash! You have to cover some things with toilet paper, otherwise who knows what awkward questions you’ll find yourself dodging.
I love spicy food. My child does not. She has been known to even call white rice spicy. I miss being able to pour in the cayenne pepper to our chili and buying the hot taco seasoning at the grocery store. Having a kid doesn’t always mean that I must forgo my spices, but it does mean that I often have to cook a second, different version for her. JUST what I have time for.
Eating Desserts Out in the Open
Iris eats her fair share of sweet stuff, but when it’s my turn for dessert she will still request to share. Iris can tell any time that I’ve eaten sweets without her. She can sniff out a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup on my breath hours later and has a way to find any candy wrapper that I’ve thrown out. I swear she must keep a spreadsheet of our dessert stock because she always knows when a cookie has disappeared. I can’t be the only mom who’s eaten ice cream in the bathroom, can I?
Peeing in Peace
It’s like there’s a sensor on my toilet seat that alerts Iris whenever I sit down. I’ve learned to the lock the door, but that doesn’t stop her from knocking (banging) and asking (yelling) questions through the door.
Want to fly somewhere on vacation? Sure, but that will cost you a whole extra plane ticket. We’re a small family, but anytime we consider flying anywhere I usually run the airfare, times it by three, and immediately change my mind. Road-trip, it is!
Eating Without Poop
What is it about sitting down to a meal that makes a kid have to poop? Even though she has been out of diapers for a couple years, we still sometimes have to assist Iris (especially in public restrooms). I didn’t know that it would be normal to eat piece of pizza, wipe a butt, and go back to eating pizza – after throughly washing my hands, of course. This one I should have known, but four years later and I’m still amazed at her timing.
R.I.P. my stream of consciousness (1980-2011). Whether I’m at work or at home, it’s nearly impossible to think about something without being interrupted. For example, I have been jumped on, whined to, and begged for juice just while I’m writing this one little paragraph. I miss being able to really hold onto an idea and think it through.
As parents we often have to pause our thoughts, dreams, sleep, fun, pizza, and happy hours, but thankfully it’s all worth it about a million times over. We’re a part of something sweeter than the dessert we sneak in the bathroom and something more thrilling that flying through the clouds. Sure my food may come with more poop than flavor, but I have a feeling one day these will be the things that I miss.