Before my daughter was born, I remember vowing to myself I wouldn’t subscribe to the idea you can’t do something because of having a baby. I knew families who claimed to never go to brunch or venture out beyond a certain time because of set schedules. I totally get that, but I knew it wasn’t me.
Naturally, having my daughter did bring changes to my lifestyle, and I adopted a simpler system of doing things. I let some activities go, changed a few priorities and learned that not all battles are worth fighting (restaurants nicer than Taco Mac, lengthy hair appointments, anything involving getting in and out of the car seat too many times, etc.). I understood why it’s easier to just stay home and try to make the next outing, but I also knew that could quickly become a habit that’s hard to break.
Thankfully, there’s no shortage of things to commit to in 2017. To find a happy balance, I try to agree to the things directly affecting my core group of people. If it adds to their quality of life to have Bellamy and me present, I do my best to not let them down. If the request comes from someone else, I try to not beat myself up over possibly causing disappointment. My baby sister’s birthday, of all things, definitely falls into the “core group” commitments I’ll make any day of the week.
My sister was nice enough to let me tag along on her birthday, even though she had an entire day to do whatever her heart desired. We went to brunch, spent some time shopping—some of us window shopped—and eventually ended up on this rooftop park that resembles an adult carnival (aka: carnival with lots and lots of booze). I had never been before, so I wasn’t sure if my 8-month-old was going to cramp the style. Did I also mention I am pregnant, and it was 85 degrees? Yep. I was a big, hot, baby-wearing mess guzzling all the water at the complimentary H2O station. I was bumping into other people, constantly digging into my bag for whatever baby item was needed and hogging the shaded spots to keep Bellamy cool and calm.
I’m sure I was a bit of a spectacle in the sea of people enjoying their childless afternoon sipping cocktails and playing games. Of course my sister didn’t mind one bit, and we had a great time! It’s challenging to insert yourself into a situation you know wont be convenient with a baby, but once you do it, you know you can. My husband works all weekend, so the chance of me flying solo to future events is always high. I’m really happy I’ve learned to have more patience and be a mom who hangs. I may not be the last one to leave—I am definitely not the first to arrive—or anyone’s ride-or-die (I have my own permanently attached to my hip), but I can hang. And I’m proud of that!