Wednesday, November 14, 2012
this is our life: on sex after baby
It's 4:00 in the afternoon on a weekday. Alex just got home from work. This means we have a half hour before it's time for one of us to start cooking dinner and then the bedtime routine begins. There is no leeway. Emerson is on a tight schedule and she lets us know that she is less than pleased when we deviate from her plan. So, a half hour is what we've got. Every time we have a window like this, I panic. These windows don't come around too often, so I obviously want to use this time wisely, but I've got a running list of about 789 different chores, business to-do's, emails to respond to, phone calls to make, and things I could do to just relax or enjoy myself so it's a tough call. I can't decide.
Alex plops himself down on the futon in the playroom, looking completely defeated by his day at work.
"Funky Town?" he asks with a deflated attempt at a wink. (Parenthood fans out there?)
I look at my husband. He hasn't had a haircut in almost two months. He used to go every two weeks, religiously, and I didn't realize how much I appreciated it until we moved to the middle of nowhere, had a baby, and he stopped looking in the mirror. He shaved his head over a year ago, thinking this would simplify things, but really it requires more maintenance in order to not look like a Chia Head. Falling in line with his lax approach to his appearance, he's also stopped shaving. Because, you can't have an unkept head and tidy beard. No. He's gone all Alexander Supertramp on me.
Then I see my reflection in the sliding glass doors of our sunroom. I'm wearing a pair of maternity yoga pants. It's been SIX MONTHS since I gave birth, and I am WELL beyond the still-kind-of-look-pregnant-and-need-maternity-pants phase. I just don't have any clean clothes. Or the time to raid my wardrobe in search of something else that does not say "Motherhood" or "Gap Maternity" on the label. So, I'm wearing maternity pants with the stomach panel folded down….several times. On top, I have a tee-shirt that is way too big, but it's a v-neck and makes for easy access to my boobs...for the baby. And then there's the sweater I grabbed without looking as Emerson was crying—a very Mr. Rogers-esque looking zip-up cardigan. Don't get me wrong, this cardigan can be cute when worn properly. But, with the aforementioned items of clothing, it's frumpy and shameful. It does, however, go well with my mess of hair—half curly, half straight due to a lack of styling time, unwashed for three days with random sections sticking up thanks to my daughter's love of pulling on and eating my hair.
"Sooo, Funky Town, babe?"
"Honestly, your beard is getting so long it smells like dreadlocks. I can't even talk about your hair. And I look like a bag lady. We're not very sexy. Maybe tomorrow?"
We both laugh, not in the least bit offended.
"What happened to us?" Alex shouts out.
"We used to be so sexy!" I yell to the sky, one fist clenched.
Alex collapses back into his seat and closes his eyes while the baby plays on the floor beneath him. I use the half hour to do chores.
This is our life.