Monday, June 14, 2010

The Party's Over

It seems like yesterday that I had a bun in the oven and was waddling around in the cold and getting into fights on the subway when folks wouldn't give up their seats for my pregnant arse. Now the baby's been born, my maternity leave is over, the warm weather is here, and I'm officially back to work.

Not many mothers yearn to leave their children with others so they can bring home the bacon, but it's a fact of life that I have to work. I miss my baby something terrible; we were inseparable for 12 months, afterall. But in the interest of Embracing the Positive Side of Life so You Don't Kill Yourself, I've realized there are some upsides to leaving the house.

One is getting off the sofa and away from the television set. I'm certain I watched every episode of every program on basic cable more than once. I saw so much t.v. I actually witnessed someone win the double showcase on the Price is Right (11 am EST on CBS). That doesn't happen very often, folks--the contestant has to be within $250 of the cost of her showcase to win both, okay? And this woman was off by $151--so... it's clear I put some serious hours into the boob tube while John put some serious hours into my boob boobs.

Another upside to being a working mother is engaging in face-to-face conversations with everyday people from all walks of life over the age of 0-3 months. Sure, mommy groups are nice (I had the chance to join one when I was back home visiting my parents), but the topics of discussion rarely stray from what new Moms are all dealing with 24 hours a day: a parasitic eating, eliminating, sleeping and crying machine who has suddenly developed baby acne and may not be getting enough tummy time--is he normal? Will this last forever? Sure, it's important stuff, and you want to know you're not alone, but sometimes you just want to hear about a great new restaurant--that doesn't have crayons on the table and sawdust on the floor-- that someone --not wearing a burp cloth on their shoulder-- had the chance to eat at recently.

What else? Well, leaving the house to go to work is a good reason to put on pants. And a little makeup, maybe run a brush through the hair. My apartment was a pants-free zone for a long time, because John and I lived on the bed, most everything we needed within arms reach. I wore a Men's XL t-shirt and John a diaper and "putting myself together" meant tossing on a robe before I answered the door for the man delivering the take out cuisine du jour.

Now that John practically sleeps through the night, the house and I are a little less messy and a little more ready for our close ups. Three months later, the baby has almost doubled his birthweight and I've already lost over half the pounds I've gained. I'm not back to my pre-pregnancy shape, and I'm not sure if I'll ever get back there, but I am finding some things in the pre-John wardrobe that fit reasonably well enough to be seen on me in public. And the public, generally, has been quite kind, offering up sentiments like, "You don't look like you just had a baby," and other crocks of shit that I'm all too happy to buy.

Last Thursday, I wore one of my red dresses from my old life which is made of fabric with a little give and has chic little "distracting pleats" in the mid-section. I was so pleased with my appearance, my reflection in the mirror almost convinced me for a nanosecond that I didn't have a baby who happened to be gurgling adorable things just a few feet away as I got dressed. Almost.

On my way home from work, I decided to visit the nail salon near my office for a touch up on the old eyebrows which hadn't been weeded in awhile. I hadn't been there since February when I got a pedicure at eight months pregnant because I couldn't see my toes. When I walked in, I was greeted by the salon owner with a big smile and enthusiastic hello, and all the ladies gathered around to see baby pictures and ask questions about John. Then the salon owner pushed my tummy and said, "You jog."

"Oh, well, yeah..." I shrugged, deflated.

And again, she pushed with her finger. Poke poke. "You jog." And she did the jogging motion with her arms, in case I didn't understand in her broken English that I'm now a fat ass.

"Yeah," I sighed, "I'll get there..."

"Because before, you sooooooooo theeeeeeeeen. And now," she gestured with her hands to make a big belly, "you soooooo..... beeeeeeeeeeeeg." Poke poke. "You jog." Jogging motion.


"Ok?" Poke poke. "You jog." Jogging motion.


I'd go kill myself, but I've got a baby to take care of. Meantime, I'll find someone to jog for me.


teri said...

got to love those Asian ladies, they are brutally honest or just brute, either one.

Glad you're back to work and some kind of routine. The mom's I know are always talking about there lack of adult conversation.

I think you look good from your pictures. don't let them bully you.

Sans Pantaloons said...

In the promotion of International Relations, I shall take the stairs for you all this week.
I may even jog a little.

anne altman said...


love, jenn said...

I will not in fact jog for you but I will let you know that I think you look AWESOME! And also I love John.

whipcreamy said...

That's retarded. You were too skinny before you had John. Now you're normal. Nothing wrong with normal!

Del-V said...

I guess the vacation is over. Now you will never get a day off from being a mom ever again.

She who cooks... said...

F the manicure ladeeeees!!!!!!!
You rock and you look amazing!!!!!!
Love you....

Roo said...

I think they should mind their own damn business. You're a fox.

Jenn Hyjack said...

Those damn Asians. When I worked for this Asian couple back in high school at the local ice cream store they would say "Jenny, you boring!!" And I'd say..."NO... I'm not BORING... but I am freakin' BORED!!!!" Motherhood is hard & fabulous... sigh.

anne altman said...




bubbles said...

As a veteran, I so appreciate your blog. You have it figured out - and if you are one of those "joggers" that ends up looking as good as before the big event - well, I'm sorry, I have to hate you.
Congratualtions on your venture into the next phase!