After pulling an all-nighter to eradicate the fleas from my house(the downside to having a neighbor with a huge heart who likes to feed all the neighborhood strays), I sleepily walked downstairs to load up on coffee. I walked into the kitchen, looked down in the sink where my coffee cup was soaking in water, only to find our hermit crab, Bernie, looking right back at me. There he was, just hanging out in a coffee cup full of water, completely out of his locked cage and looking at me like it was any other day. I gently removed him from my favorite cup and returned him to his habitat. I decided to use a different coffee cup this morning as I was pretty sure no amount of cleaning would get me in a mindset of being ok with drinking out of this one.
I took my coffee upstairs and began my one child and pet-free ritual of the day: a shower. That glorious 5 minutes where I am covered in steam and suds and happiness. This moment of bliss ended when I pulled the curtain back to find my cat sitting there waiting for me. The cat who has a weird fetish of trying to lick my legs immediately following my shower. I have never understood it and it is one of the many behaviors he possesses that make it constantly awkward to have him as a roommate.
Since I refuse to let him take advantage of me once again, I did the only rational thing and jumped over him landing on my slate floor with my wet feet and slipped catching myself by grabbing my daughter’s dragon towel hanging on the door. I quickly recovered and ran down the hallway to my room. The cat followed in quick pursuit and before I could close my door, he swooped in and rubbed his entire body against me leaving a huge clump of hair on my freshly shaven legs. I rolled my eyes, grunted, and proceeded to get dressed.
My daughter, who instantly begins talking the moment she opens her eyes in the morning and doesn’t stop until she passes out in the evening, miraculously slept through all of this despite my screams. I decided to take advantage of the few minutes of quiet I still had and sat down with my coffee and looked through my Timehop app. Such a lovely invention; an app that shows you every picture you took for the last decade or more. I usually love this app because it shows me the chunky squishy photos of my daughter when she was an infant, photos of my past life as a marathon runner, and photos of my rounded pregnant belly. Today it reminded me that not so many years ago, I was out to brunch, sipping mimosas, and eating a salmon benny with friends; single friends without kids. And there it was: the old me. I was going to be the forever-single girl travelling the world in my 20’s, 30 and flirty, and never, ever, settling down or having kids. The biggest care I had was whether I was going to order another mimosa or switch to bloody marys.
Now, I am two months away from my 40th birthday, and I am raising a strong, independent, opinionated, smart little human being, a cat who is my nemesis, an aging blind dog with lyme disease, and a hermit crab who is an escape artist. This morning’s shenanigans have basically been my life for the last four years. I am comfortable here now. I live in a sitcom and I like it. Still, I am fully aware that five years ago I would have scoffed at the me I am today. I am still in awe of just how different I am now and am forever grateful for the curve ball life threw at me 5 years ago.
While there are some days like this morning when all I want to do is curl up in a ball and cry(and sometimes I do just that), I try to just laugh about it. I have a kid who loves animals, so sometimes that means dealing with fleas or hermit crabs in my coffee cup, or dog poo on my bare foot. It’s all part of my new mom life and I’ve grown to love it. I’ll be the first to admit that I have moments when I long for those carefree mimosa mornings, but all in all I like the excitement and unpredictability of this mom life and look forward to the continued craziness yet to come.