Do you remember the days of being a newlywed or just a single adult who came home from work and enjoyed a nice, luxurious bubble bath with a glass of wine? You sat there in the silence, perhaps with candles and took in the relaxation. The only things you really had to worry about were some work issues and personal finances. But you sat there in silence alone, or even with your significant other, and enjoyed the moment.
Last night I came across an Instagram picture that seemed like it was just that. I went to bed doing all of the comparisons in my mind of my nights compared to that. I can't tell you the last time I had a night like that. Let's face it...motherhood changes that crap for reals.
Let's just be frank here.
My bathtub is full of rubber ducks and Elmo bath books; candles are nonexistent because of little hands (and toxins anyway) and wine is irrelevant to me because I'm either always knocked up or breastfeeding (both by choice).
An attempt at a bubble bath results in either A) waiting for the kids to go to bed, but later results in me being too tired to indulge in the moment or B) leaving the kid(s) with daddy only to have them banging on the door.
"Mama. Mama. Mammmmaaaaa."
You try to ignore it but then the little fingers start sliding under the door. The tantrums start and no matter what daddy may try, they just want you. It's like they find you no matter where you are. Apparently they have a good nose like a dog...they find your trail EVERY.DAMN. TIME.
Even if we try to ignore the little bubble bath busters, our hearts just can't do it. We are a mother and eventually we pull the plug and let the bubbles out and pour the wine down the drain as well.
But let's be even more honest here. Chances are that you didn't even attempt that luxurious bubble bath. More than likely, you put the kids to bed and attempted to finish tending to the house. You have to pick up the toys (the same ones you picked up three times that day), finish cleaning the kitchen from dinner's mess (after you cleaned it already from the other umpteen meals), you finally take the clothes out of the washer (that have likely been sitting there for three hours waiting to be put to dry) and you attempt to have a real adult conversation with your husband (who may sitting there enjoying some TV...nice, right?). And finally, after all is said and done, you hope to catch up on two weeks worth of TV shows followed by a quick shower with NO hair washing involved and a yet again late night to bed.
That's real life for you. That's motherhood.
But the reality of it all is that you wouldn't change it for the world.
Sure you miss the alone nights, but even when you get them you can't help but think of and miss the little leeches that always find you. They are a part of you that you miss when they are not there.
And what is even more real about this, is that a silly Instagram picture can never fully depict the life behind it. Perhaps the person is longing for motherhood and wishes their bath tub was full of rubber ducks or perhaps the person isn't living it up like you imagine. While we exhausted mothers are tired at the end of the day, there are many, many women longing to feel the exhaustion of motherhood.
So yes, I would love to have a moment of silence and relaxation like that again. But I know the reality is that it is just not the right time; no matter how hard I try to make "me" time, me now really involves two other little human beings. Because they are a part of ME. They are my world and my heart and the bubbles of joy to my day.
However, I'll take that glass of wine soon please.