How our life has changed

Monkey is a very laid-back, travel- and restaurant-friendly kiddo. So good, in fact, that Hubby and I haven’t really had to give up all that much of our former lives. Sure, getting out-and-about is logistically more complicated, we can’t just up and fly off to wherever when inspiration strikes, and our ability to go out for a late-night on the town requires planning ahead for a babysitter. But Hubby and I have always been more homebodies than late-night partyers, and we never took off on a moment’s notice for Vegas or Europe.

What has changed? First of all, the amount of time it takes to be ready to walk out the door has doubled, and the amount of stuff that walks out the door with us has quadrupled. Along with our usual luggage, trips require a play yard, stroller, diaper bag, diapers, wipes, burp rags, bottles, toys, books, breast pump, baby food, binkies, plenty of clothes changes, and the car seat. Our hikes on summer weekends used to be several miles long on rough terrain; now we enjoy short, easy strolls closer into town. Instead of going out for dinner at 8pm, Hubby picks up take-out and wine/beer while I’m putting Monkey down for bed.

And our favorite dive bar we frequented during summers past? The one right next to the creek with a huge patio, usually filled to the brim with bikers and smoke? The one with the long line  for the bathroom down a narrow hallway lined with mug shots of famous people? The one with a live band so loud that we had to yell at each other? Yeah, that ain’t gonna happen. Now we opt for a family-friendly spot just down the road – pizza, beer and patio seating next to the creek, with non-smoking signs, classic rock on the speakers at moderate volume, and a KoalaKare changing station in the bathroom.

So life has changed, but not really in a bad way. In service to Monkey, Hubby and I drink less, inhale less second-hand smoke, spare our eardrums, go to bed earlier, spend less on dining out, and visit fewer biker bars. And we get to cuddle with the cutest little boy every morning and evening.

Not a bad trade-off.

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