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The Inconveniences of Parenthood

This past weekend, Dennis and I got to enjoy an incredibly rare event – date night!  With my mom, a.k.a. Gaga, visiting for the week, we were sure to schedule a date.  Sienna was spending the night at her friend Gracie’s house after we all celebrated Gracie’s birthday party that afternoon.  So, Gaga and Teo got to spend some quality time together while mommy and daddy had their date.

We’d planned to go to dinner and kept open the option of seeing a movie afterwards.  However, we stayed a little later at the birthday party (couldn’t pull ourselves away from fun friends!) and then Teo fell asleep on the drive home.  He’d spent a lot of the party in the bounce house and by 5:00 p.m. was completely knocked out.  He and Dennis snuggled on the couch while mom and I watched Chopped until 6:00 p.m.

Once Teo was awake and back to his friendly self, we finally left for our date.  We both felt like Chinese food, so we went to a great place for a nice, leisurely meal at a quintessentially Chinese place.  It was so fun to have the time to talk without interruption and enjoy each other’s company.

It was just a little after 8:00 p.m. when we finished dinner but we didn’t know what to do with ourselves.  The movie didn’t start for a couple of hours and we were too tired for a 10:15 p.m. movie anyway.  We didn’t want to spend a lot and were too full for dessert.  So, we headed home.

My mom was surprised to see us so early!  We settled into the living room and watched Teo, energized from his late afternoon nap, bounce around the room.  He kept asking us, “Watch me jump!   Watch me jump on one foot!”  Dennis and I giggled, “Now we can say we had dinner and a show.”

About an hour after we’d both fallen asleep, we got a call from the slumber party.  Sienna had a bad dream and wanted to go home. I talked to her for a few seconds, asking if she thought she’d be able to go back to sleep.  She cried and said she was scared and needed me.  So, Dennis and threw on clothes and headed out to pick her up.  Our friends’ house is a good 25 minute drive, so we settled in for a nearly hour round trip to retrieve our daughter.  I said a little prayer for protection – not a huge fan of driving that late on a Saturday night!  We went through a sobriety checkpoint without incident.  Sienna fell asleep immediately once we started the drive home. She was exhausted from a full day of playing at the party.

Reflecting on this weekend, this was a good example of how parenthood is massively inconvenient.

In just one day, Mateo fell asleep at an inopportune time, delaying our much-anticipated date, and we trekked to pick up Sienna in the middle of the night from a sleepover.  But, you know what?  We wouldn’t change a thing.

Letting Teo sleep was the right decision, he awoke happier and didn’t throw a fit when we left for dinner.  He and Gaga had a fun night and got to spend time just the two of them.   I felt great camaraderie with my husband as we drive in sleepy silence to pick up our daughter.  We remarked that we’d look back on this with fondness; it would be a story we could reflect on and relate to other parents.

Life with kids is inconvenient.  They require a huge amount of our time and attention.  But, it’s so worth it.  The joy, love, and fun that they bring to our lives FAR outweigh all the times our plans are changed or delayed.

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