Okay, so we all know that as we age, lots of things change. We droop in places we never thought we would. We ache easier after doing yardwork. Or laundry. Or lifting anything greater than 5 pounds. But the thing that changes the most, especially when we have kids, are the hangovers we have. They have morphed into unquestionable days (yes, that is plural) of misery that are amplified by the negotiations you have as you try not to projectile vomit while changing your kid’s diaper.
Most recently, I went to a friend’s wedding. It was one of THOSE. The wine was flowing and it was an outdoor wedding and rainy, so what else could you do but continue to drink and have a good time. I was coherent enough to know I should be drinking water at some point, but the waiters were continually coming around to refill my not-quite-empty wine glass at every turn. By the time we left for my parent’s house, which is where we were staying, I remembered the moments in brief clips. I vaguely remember telling one of the bride’s friends I would come to visit her in San Diego. I sort of remember turning up the heat in the car (it was pretty chilly). I don’t remember getting home to my parents and undressing, taking my makeup off, and taking my tampon out (yes, I did it all). When I woke up the next morning, my head was fuzzy, and I had to go back to sleep. My parents were getting up with the kids, but I knew it would still be rough. My sentences wouldn’t form right, my mom’s usually yummy pancakes tasted like cotton in my mouth, and my kid’s talking was much louder than it actually was. When we finally rolled on home, after an hour and half drive that my husband so wonderfully took care of, I could barely move off of the couch. Luckily, the kids entertained themselves so I could blob around on the couch and be dumb. Because that is how my hangovers are now. Drawn out and feeling stupid.
Okay. So the next weekend, at a wedding that I was to assume that I would get dumb again (open bar!), I was smarter. I slowed my drinking, drank everyone’s water at the table, and took some advil before I went to bed. I feel fantastic going to bed, albeit still a bit fuzzy. Woke up the next morning feeling fine (stomach wise) but still ridiculously fuzzy and dumb. What the hell is going on with me? Is it age? Does it feel amplified by the two small children who whine and cry? Now don’t get me wrong. I am definitely NOT saying I like hangovers. They suck. But I used to slightly relish the thought of being able to sit around in pj’s all day on the couch, eating greasy food and napping on and off while watching some stupid re-runs of shows I’ve seen a thousand times. The laziness I felt from those days made me feel slobbish, but I secretly enjoyed the lack of needing to do anything. No responsibilities, no timeframe, no one relying on me. A little different would be an understatement.
And so it goes. I will continue to think I am doing better than I am even though I am a responsible 35 year old who has a good 14 years under my belt (18 if you count the times I went to visit my sisters at college at the insistence of my father to “experience” college life). I will wake up at the butt crack of dawn with my kids who have no clue how much mommy’s head is trying NOT to explode all over the place, while the caffeine refuses to work and I try to sneak in a nap while they watch Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. And by the time my husband rolls out of bed a few hours later on his morning to sleep in, I am somewhat recovered minus sleep and I crash later on while the kids are napping. Hey, a quick 30 minute nap while they are down is better than nothing right now. But believe me, it doesn’t beat the carefree days of spending all day on the couch.