Sorry for the long silence here on Comedy and Tragedy. I’m in Seattle right now, and one of the major reasons I came was to help babysit my nieces, aged 1 and 4, while my sister was on a safari in Africa. So, the explanation for my silence is the same as the explanation for the title of this post. I want to give props to all the parents I know. Like big, huge, major, gargantuan props.
The last 72 hours were intense, fun, exhausting, and very eye-opening.
Admittedly, I came into my sister’s house with very little child care experience and kind of hit the ground running without much of a clue, but damn. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been so utterly gutted–or the last time I didn’t have time to eat or pee or even realize there were strange, unidentifiable substances on my clothing let alone do something about it. And that’s not even mentioning having time to write or do any sort of work for myself, because, of course, when there are kids in the picture they must (and should) come first.
The end of the day would roll around and bath time and story time and everything else would be over. We’d stagger downstairs to face the disaster zone that had been created and recreated 43 times that day (bits of food all around the baby’s chair, toys strewn across the floor, cat vomit from the morning that we hadn’t had time to clean up, and cookie dough on every other unsoiled surface from an ill-planned baking adventure) and there was one and only one thing I wanted to do: drink while watching mindless shit on television.
What blows my mind even more is that I had help. My brother-in-law was there and he was very hands on. It wasn’t like I was dealing with the kids on my own. I’m sure those of you who have children will be laughing at me and thinking, “yeah, what did you expect?”
My answer: I did expect it to be just like this. But expecting something isn’t the same as experiencing it. I guess I knew having small children meant it was really hard to squeeze in time for your own projects, housework, and personal hygiene but I didn’t understand what that really felt like until now.
So, I want to give props to everyone I know who has kids, and especially to my writer friends who not only have kids but also have jobs and still manage to get writing done. I am in awe of you all.