"Families with babies and families without babies are sorry for each other." ~Ed Howe
Ain't that the truth? I remember reading this quote when I was single and had plans to stay childless forever. I saw screaming kids go running from their mothers in the mall and would take comfort in knowing that would never be me. I remember sitting on the patio one night with Peyton and high-fiving each other for not having kids and getting to do whatever we wanted, whenever we wanted. Kids, to a person without them, especially to someone who doesn't want them, look like nothing more than an unpotty-trained obligation. They look like a commitment too overwhelming to ever consider, and a lot of the time, they look dirty and gross too.
All of those things are true.
What the people without children don't understand though, is how wonderful all of that stuff is. I don't get to go to happy-hour anymore, because instead, I have to come home to an adorable baby who is bound to be doing something new and unexpected today, and needs me to take his picture. I used to look over at mini-vans at red lights and feel so badly for the women driving them. Poor ladies not only had to put up with incessant yapping from the back seat, they had to drive a nerdy car too. Lucky me. Sitting in my convertible by myself, listening to whatever I want to. Now, I play songs by Moose A. Moose for my four month old, who probably doesn't care what's on the radio, because I like the songs.
Everything I do for Harrison, right down to cleaning poop from places I didn't know poop could go, makes me ten times happier than anything I ever did for myself. As I sat in the massage chair getting a pedicure the other day, I grew increasing more frustrated with how long the woman was rubbing my legs before painting my toenails because I just wanted to get home to my baby. Who even cares if my legs are massaged? What I have to go home to now is more rewarding and exciting and fun and interesting and fulfilling than anything my life every provided me before.
I've been on both sides of the fence. The thing is, people who don't want kids can always change their minds. People who have them would never want to.
I don't miss happy hour. And there's beer in the fridge.