Garon Wade used to answer this a lot differently before the arrival of Little Dude.
Before our little man, Matteo, came along, we went out, often. Actually before my husband, Jamie, gets on here, uses my password, and edits this because it’s slightly misleading, allow me.
Before our little man, Matteo, came along, I, mostly I—went out, often. But as any parent will tell you, once your baby arrives you can say goodbye to spontaneous happy hours after work and late night drinks at your favorite neighborhood bar. Being spontaneous to me now is a last minute decision to not watch another episode of DocMcstuffins, but instead to throw the little one in the stroller and jet off around the neighborhood. And by ‘jet off around the neighborhood’ I mean, walking 4 or 5 blocks while saying things like “Dog. Look buddy, a Dog. Can you say- D-O-G, Dog?” while nervous passerbys look at me like I’m crazy. Let me tell you, that last minute shift can be very liberating. Parents will understand that being spontaneous is hard to master when you need to lock down a babysitter about a week in advance.
Our friends have been so good to us over the last year, still inviting us out to Adult events around town, get-togethers at new restaurants and cool bar openings around The District. And they continue to do it, even as we, most often, don’t end up going. And, having said that, I feel that we have done a pretty good job of keeping our social life going, in the way that we can, since Matteo came into our life a year ago.
The problem is- I haven’t quite figured out how to respond to the small and awesome group of friends who ONLY text me at 10PM on a Thursday night (going out in DC is big on Thursdays) and whose text reads, “Where You At?”. If memory serves, this kind of text is usually sent as one is bar-hopping and wondering who else might be out to come engage in a wonderful night of drinking with you. The thing is, I am secretly very excited to receive that text because frankly, I am just so grateful that I am even still in their contact list. Truth be told, there’s no way at 10PM on a Thursday night, I can run out the door. My former self would have thrown on a black v-neck and high top Adidas and run. But my current self wants to say something to the effect of: ”Yo! thx for texting. I actually can’t make it but could we plan for 2 Thursdays from now? What are you doing then? We could have drinks … but do you think we could do closer to 8PM? I could probably do 8:15- maybe 8:30.”
Let’s be real. No one wants to hear that. Its zero spontaneous and frankly, when I was child-less, I had no idea what I was doing two Thursdays from now. Now I know what I am doing 4 weeks in advance and the next two pediatrician appointments. So while I do love getting that “Where You At” text———-Where Am I? If I’m being completely honest, here’s what I’d say:
“I’m lying in bed covered in formula and there is dried baby saliva on my neck from my kid, who thinks its funny to bite me. I’m staring down at cheerios on the ground smashed into the carpet. I just realized that I forgot to eat dinner and my arm has a strange orange tint to it- probably Gerber sweet potatoes or the Pumpkin and Banana organic blend. I didn’t make it to the gym today, as I lie here I can feel two pacifiers under the covers that I have been looking for, and frankly I barely have the energy to get up and go brush my teeth. Oh god, the baby is starting to cry …”
That’s where I’m At. Where You At?
Previously published at GayDadSwag.com
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photo courtesy of the author