I won’t Sugar coat it. It’s not easy. If you are a social butterfly who enjoys going out with friends at night and having fun just doing you, be prepared to give most of that up. If you are homebodies, then why haven’t you got kids already?!
I loved my freedom, and for the first year or so I was okay to give that all up because I was also still recovering from pregnancy and trying to lose baby weight so I was ashamed to be seen in public, plus the actual effort to put makeup on and get out of my lounge wear was enough to keep me inside. But after a while you see your single/kid-less friends, going out and having fun and while you are changing nappies, washing, cleaning and cooking. You get a small sense of FOMO, but mainly you just miss being able to do the same free thing. So how do you have a child and still keep some freedom?
I’m not saying you will be able to have a child and still let your tits go crazy every night. Plus if you are breastfeeding crazy tits hurt. Just keep them calm for a bit and let them get crazier as time goes on.
First step: Talk and arrange days with your husband. If you are both social people then divide up the nights with the baby and your partner. For example I host trivia on Monday nights, so Tuesday and Thursday my husband is free to go bouldering, play squash or see friends. Wednesday night I have the same freedom. The other nights are open in case one of you gets an invite, or you decide on the day you need to go out and get wasted with friends (see – here comes that crazy tit!)
Second Step: Find baby friendly places that you can both go to. This means you both can go out and socialize with others. This is much easier when the baby is 0-14months old. Once they start walking…well good luck keeping them to sit still. For kids that can walk, go somewhere with play equipment, or bring some toys for them to play with while you sit and catch up. My son wont also sit there and watch youtube like all the other kids, he would much rather run on the road and play with fire. So we get a take away coffee and go to a park where he can play, and we can talk.
Now we have covered day and night situations, what about couple time?
That’s Step Three.
Everyone says, get a BaBy SitTEr, go out and have a night to yourselves. For most we have family members close by who are happy to watch the baby for the night, or for a few hours so you can have some baby free time together and they won’t cost us anything other than a few thank yous and maybe some chocolate. But some of you might not have that option, so instead you need to get a good baby sitter in to look after your child. But then that’s an extra $50-$100 for the night and that just turned your night out into $150, then if you drink and Uber it’s like $200 and now you are thinking well shit is it even worth it! If you can’t afford a baby sitter and you don’t have family this is what my partner and I do.
We plan a date in. Baby is in bed by 8 so all 3 of us will have dinner together. While one is getting the baby down to sleep the other is cleaning up the dishes, tidying up the lounge quickly and getting the wine ready. Once the other is done, you pop open the drink of choice, open up the snacks and bring out the ice cream while we both either sit on the deck and talk, laugh, drink, or we move inside and relax with a movie we have been meaning to watch for ages. One agrees to drink a bit less so that in the morning, the one recovering can sleep in a bit. This obviously works best on weekends when you don’t have to worry about work as well. You should also keep in mind the time your baby normally wakes up so you don’t go to bed, get 3 hours of sleep and is wrecked when it comes to getting up with the baby.
Another option which I don’t recommend is that you start your baby drinking at a young age and bring it out partying with you. You will be that cool crazy family that everyone wonders if they should call child services on but aren’t game too. So maybe stick to the first 3 steps.
Every now and then you might need more than a night off, talk with your partner and arrange a weekend off with your girls, or together. I am going away for a weekend away with a friend and my partner is okay and excited to have a boys weekend. Because he knows I need one.
Work, life, stress and babies will get to you. You need to take a break for you and your family and its okay to admit that and to ask for that. So never be afraid to stop and take time in what you need to keep things going and to keep you sane.
I hope this helps those with kids and those thinking of having kids and managing a life around them.
Any questions, just ask!
As always, Enjoy your tea or coffee and have a wonderful day!
Cosy with Sam.