BY ALICIA DONOVAN
Seriously, how did we get here?
It truly amazes me when I think about it. Life was really good. My husband and I actually communicated. We laughed, we dreamed, we were able to complete a sentence without being interrupted 25 times. We bickered, but it was over things that really didn’t matter. It was just the two of us. We were completely normal. When I think back, I would say we were pretty boring. Sure, we THOUGHT we were fun and did adventurous things. We went out, we enjoyed life. But we had no idea what adventure was until a 9-pound 10-ounce not-so-little bundle appeared. That’s when life really started for us. And then bam, 15 months later, another bundle arrived.
As fast as these two came, it seemed our typical boring married life walked right out the front door. We were knee deep in life changes. Baby gear and sterilized bottles cluttered our world. We found ourselves under the crib in the middle of the night searching for dropped pacifiers. Our alarm clocks got neglected because there was an automatic 5 a.m. wake-up call in the next room. There was no snooze button for that one.
The Sunday paper stopped being delivered. We were shopping for minivans and singing PBS morning theme songs. Planning first-year birthday parties and spending time at Babies R Us filled our weekends. We were searching for clean clothes and arguing over who was going to walk the dogs. OMG, we have dogs. We totally forgot about the dogs.
I realized I wasn’t very nice on four hours of sleep. He realized he was quickly losing my attention and becoming a regular at curbside to go. The only time I had to myself was during the three minutes it took to fill up my car with gas. I’d take in the fumes and reflect back to the pre-kid days.
My husband and I set up family meetings to discuss who was going to sleep in on Saturday morning. We resented the other’s free time. We kept score on everything. Who got up in the middle of the night. How long did it take to rock our little bam-bams to sleep. How many diapers were changed in a one-hour period. And of course ,who got peed on the most — double points for the pee.
All that, and my husband was trying to figure out how to score a 60-hour work week with a lousy commute. Of course I let him win on that one.
And soon the dust settled. Baby gear got sold off at a garage sale, sleepless nights turned into sleepovers. “Me” time got put back on the calendar. There was even a split second when I questioned if we should have more. WHAT, are you crazy! You quickly shake off the thought and pack up the tinker toys.
And then the Sunday paper mysteriously shows up at your front door. You ask each other, “Where are the kids?” The score sheet gets lost. You have clean underwear. The alarm clock gets reprogrammed.
And you look back at the pictures of your toddling tots, your cake-covered kids on their first birthday. And you still have no idea how you got here!