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February 6, 2009

Tonight I was reminded again of exactly how hard it is to resume my old life where I just get dressed, put on lipstick and go to an art opening that starts at 6pm. I should remember, and you’d think I would know by now, that this is not possible, not in the same way that it was before anyway. First of all, getting dressed is improbable. Normally I would be wearing the same stained outfit I was wearing all day. When attempting to don a clean fashionable outfit, inevitably the 1 year old starts crying and clinging to my leg as my husband stands by helplessly. Not to mention the fact that since it has been so long since I actually have worn any of my “evening” outfits, I don’t know what looks good anymore and it all ends up with something pretty boring because I have one minute to figure it out before total baby meltdown occurs. Lipstick is the ultimate guilt trip because it is totally unnecessary  and it takes valuable time. After all of this, two cars are taken to the opening because I know we will have to leave early, leaving my husband to have the rest of the evening alone with our friends drinking wine and enjoying art. At the event, I walk in by myself with a squirming toddler who can’t quite walk yet himself so he has to be carried the entire time. Of course that is not his idea of a fun evening. Amongst hundreds of our closest friends I cling to the twisting turning kid as he attempts to launch himself out of my arms. I let him crawl around the gallery for a little bit amongst unaware legs, and he reaches for a few paintings, heads for the curtains and grabs a few wine glasses out of a crate behind the drinks table. Finally I go over to my husband, take his glass of wine and hand over the baby. Walking around the gallery, I hear desperate screams in the background wherever I go. My friend tells me she is having a baby this summer and I am genuinely glad for her while listening for sounds of distress around the corner. They have been wanting a kid and it will be great but she doesn’t know about the not comfortably going to galleries part yet. Husband and baby walk by and baby reaches out for me with his crying rectangle mouth in full form. Of course I take him, I love my little guy, and off we go out the door. It has been 30 minutes. A few minutes later we are getting dressed for bed, changing his diaper for the night, reading books and turning on his night light. I nurse him for almost an hour before he falls asleep, and I am lying there in the dark listening to his breathing, still wearing my lipstick.

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