Tasting Life’s Sweetness

Written by Jennifer Mathieson on .


I don’t know what time it is. I only know that it’s still dark out when I hear the padding of feet down the hallway. The squeak of my bed lets me know my visitor is upon me. With one fail swoop he jumps and lands directly on my bladder (I would be lying if I said nothing leaked out. But I had three kids in three years and the word Kegel was just a dream.). My eyes were still blurry as I stumbled to the bathroom and walked over at least one million toy cars that poked holes into my soul through my feet with each step. I promptly stepped into a puddle of urine (it’s always a puddle of urine; I am the only female urinator in my family). My scream of shock woke up the other two boys. I grabbed my phone and the clock registers 6am…way too early for the rodeo. 

So, in my infinite wisdom, I decided to make a list of all the freedom I’ve lost since my wild and crazy college days (and by wild and crazy I mean staying up and studying molecular biology until the wee hours of the morning).

In no particular order:

Bunk beds used to be awesome. I could climb out of my bed with gazelle like grace and blurry vision within seconds of realizing I overslept my alarm that’s been on snooze for the past two hours. It now takes me about 20 minutes of pep talk and a five minute climb up the ladder in order to change the sheets (and even longer when I have to go up there to clean up puke or bathroom accidents).

Three hours of sleep used to mean I could go to class, take a midterm and ace it, and function as a normal part of society. Now it means I cannot remember my name, if I changed my child’s diaper (yes I did), and what I was supposed to do today.

Sweatpants and hooded sweatshirts were the cool way to dress. It was college chic at its finest (you got double points if you wore your school’s trademarked gear). Who knew I would still be wearing those same sweatpants and sweatshirts 13 years later? But unfortunately it is no longer chic (a hooded sweatshirt is great camouflage for that post baby stomach pooch).

Ramen noodles, microwave popcorn, and pints of Ben and Jerry’s served as a full meal. Now, the thought of those things just sends fat to my thighs and preservatives to my bloodstream.

Now, a grunt and a mean look are acceptable forms of communication.

Alcohol is not needed for a hangover. Instead, screeching children shining bright flashlights in my eyes is enough to induce a migraine and hangover effect.

I dream of napping (glorious uninterrupted hours of sleep all through the afternoon). However, the elusive nap is about as realistic as trying to keep a clean house with three occupational hazards known as toddlers.

After my morning diet coke (never been a coffee drinker…just a caffeine addict) and a good chuckle, I realized that comparing my old life to my current life was like comparing dark chocolate and milk chocolate. Both are amazing, both have a place in my life, and both have brought a special sweetness that I need. I think we often get so caught up in the past (whether it’s past mistakes, past heartaches, past joys) that we miss what is so perfect and sweet about the present. So, take a moment and drink in your life. Get a chuckle out of the crazy shopping trips that end in tantrums, the slobbery sweet open mouthed baby kisses, the food thrown to the ground, the late nights and early mornings, and the non-stop never ending love.