Espirit de Corps

Today! -hang on a minute, I need to clear my throat.

*ahem*

TOdaaaay.-whew!!! So much better!!

I would like to call out every movie, every book and every tv show that has ever made loving an active duty service member look like some sort of beautiful, romantic, fairytale. And the tag chasers that fell for that silliness.

Are. You. Freaking. Kidding me?!

Loving a service member isn’t romantic. Or fun. There are no break out into song moments. -trust me, I’ve pleaded with my guy friends while they were picking songs at a karaoke bar to sing “you’ve lost that lovin feelin” at least a dozen times. It doesn’t happen. Now ask them to sing “1 bourbon, 1 scotch n 1 beer” and you’re golden. But that’s a whole nother story.- there are no moments in which a service member in uniform lifts a woman up and carries her into the sunset. -as I sit here typing that, I’m trying to recall a time I’ve ever requested it. It seems weird to me that I haven’t. Maybe my mature brain has rationalized that since I can’t hold my husbands hand while he’s in uniform, I shouldn’t ask to be carried…But I’m not the rational type so that seems silly.-anyway, where were we? ah yes.-Loving a service member. It’s not romantic love letters and phone calls filling your ear with sweet nothings.

Hell no.

It’s years of weird, awkward porno phone conversations, (Seriously. Try telling your special someone how hot and bothered you are while wiping your 2 year olds butt or baking cookies) It’s “creative” emails with secret language and fun filled pictures that change how you look at everything in your surroundings. It’s having to maintain your “bubble” personal space with everyone -down to your mother people-because you haven’t been touched by a person for so long there’s no telling what kindof response your body would have from just a simple hug.

It’s running from the table at Thanksgiving Dinner with your in laws when someone says “thank you for allowing us all to be together on such a wonderful day” to avoid screaming at the top of your lungs “WE’RE NOT ALL HERE! CAN’T YOU SEE THE HOLE?” It’s making Holiday Traditions your spouse may never know. It’s building relationships with your special someones family and friends not as you, but as them.( picture yourself spending hours picking the right birthday card for your mom in law to sign from them and only them. It’s like being Santa to EVERYONE in your family. All these amazing things happen thanks to your thought and care, but everyone thinks it’s someone else.

It’s bedtime stories that end with “Sweet dreams. Daddy loves you” to your children. Followed by long conversations about your day that only your bedroom walls will hear, because when they do finally call there’s so much to say you can’t say anything.

It’s exhausting. Sleeping with a phone in your hand and your computer in your lap with one eye open. Yeah….That’s exhausting

And it’s stinky. -No. I mean it. It smells. Bad. Seriously. Have you ever smelled a pair of socks that can stand up on their own thanks to a 20 mile hike in 110 degree weather? That shit ain’t right!

Loving a service member means that from the moment you promise forever, your life is no longer your own. You will be torn from everything you know and thrust into a life that you no longer have a say in. Where you live, how you spend your time, how you dress will be dictated all in the name of morale and leadership. It means feeling like an outcast when surrounded by people you’ve known your entire life but feeling at home with strangers simply because the strangers speak “military”

It means fighting the urge to punch some ungrateful bitch when she complains because her husband didn’t take out the garbage that morning when they left for work, and holding your friends hand as they deliver their first born son because daddy left for Afghanistan a day to early to be there for the birth. It’s being strong enough to deliver that baby by yourself because while your husband was gone, your family is 2000 miles away and any near by friends couldn’t be there that one time.

It’s realizing the most important person in the world to you has somehow, through distance and time become just words on a computer screen or ink on a piece of paper. While their words keep you moving forward, you’ve come to realize the person behind them is barely a memory.

It’s going to bed at night and praying to God, that if your person is to leave your side someday, he take them now, while they are only words on a screen or ink on a piece of paper. Because to hold them once again, and lose them forever is far worse than the idea of losing the person behind the computer screen you’re struggling to remember

Loving an Active Duty Service member is not romantic. Or fun. It’s not even cute. Certainly not something to do to yourself on purpose.

It’s painful.It’s hard. It’s lonely.

But there’s a sense of pride in it that won’t be found anywhere else. A love and loyalty that only the few that survive the pain and loneliness will ever know. And that is beautiful.

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The Mr. and His Hooker

There comes a point in a marriage when the couple becomes….Comfortable. You’re not afraid to kiss each other with morning breath, the idea of him seeing you in your “period underwear” doesn’t rock your very core and he doesn’t run into another room to pass gas. -Even if you’re at the dinner table.- Once you’ve reached this point, the next stage in the relationship-the one where you will for example, extend the length of time between shaving your legs and don’t rush him at the door when he comes home from a long day of work,isn’t too far behind.

The Mr. and I have been lucky enough to push both of these stages back longer than most due to his constant deployment/training schedule the first ten years of marriage. (I kid you not, I counted it out one day and realized that of the first ten years of our marriage the days and months he was home with us added together totaled about three and a half years)  When you’re separated for long periods of time, as we were, each visit home is a new beginning. There isn’t much time to get “comfortable” when you’re relearning your spouse an upwards of three times a year.

Lucky (or not maybe?….) for us that all stopped a few years ago when he was given orders to a nondeployable, non “choppable” support unit. One of like 3 in the entire world. Now he’s home regularly. Yes, he still has trainings and schools to attend a few times a year, but 2-4 weeks away from home is nothing in comparison to 7 months gone at least once a year.

This has affected our family in many ways. For starters my kids worlds were shattered when, after asking when daddy would be leaving for his next rotation because he’d been home a month and a half were told “he’s not leaving this year”

“What do you mean he’s not leaving?! That’s his job!” they screeched. It took a good year and a half for them to stop asking when his next deployment was.

Yes. He’s had to learn school schedules. Attend conferences and go to every possible performance the kids have had since his return and he’s holding his own at each. Though there were a few bumps along the way. He’s come to realize when my monthly cycle is, how often I wake up in the middle of the night to make a bathroom run and exactly how many scoops of sugar go into my cup of coffee each morning. He’s also learned what can and can not be discussed before the pot of coffee is emptied

This comfort and understanding has been good for us. At least that’s what I thought. But then he left for a few weeks to attend yet another school somewhere in Washington State…..And some jackhole thought it would be fun to schedule his return from said training at 11pm on a Friday night. When his flight plan came in he suggested just leaving his car at the squadron so I wouldn’t have to pick him up in the middle of the night upon his return. I laughed at him. Told him he was crazy and there was no way he would get off that plane without me there to welcome him home. It just wasn’t happening.

Then he left. And somehow, the Gods (whichever one you believe in) decided it would be fun to torture me. Everyday. All day. The ENTIRE time he was gone. Military spouses have a Murpheys Law of their own. It goes like this;

“Shit will break. Kids will become sick. You will suffer a debilitating injury and the dog will run away. And this will only happen the day he leaves. ”

By the time his return from his trip came to be, I was so emotionally and physically exhausted I couldn’t stand myself.For the life of me, I couldn’t remember the last time I’d taken a shower, had no clue where my razor had run off to and was pretty sure that  I’d been wearing the same shirt for 2 or 3 days.

I told him to get a cab home.

By 9pm that night I was counting the ways I loved him and our children, our life really, so I wouldn’t high tail it out of the house the second he walked through the door. I felt dirty and bitter. Anger began to fill me as I envisioned his return.  After all, how dare he leave me alone to run this zoo we call our home and think for one second I would ever want to greet him, happily and lovingly at the airport when I could be spending that time getting the much needed sleep my body was screaming I needed.

Then a friend popped up on my IM. Her Mr. had recently left as well. But he was not attending some class out of state. Or on some weekend trip with the boys. Nope. He had run away to some other country far far away and didn’t plan to return for at least 6 more months. My bitterness towards my Mr. was nothing compared to the bitterness she was feeling towards me when I told her I didn’t want to pick mine up at the airport.

“Go get your man” she typed. “At least you have a man to get”

The seriousness of our conversation didn’t last long before we were teasing each other about all the randoms we were currently dealing with in our lives.Dark humor is the only survival method of a military spouse

“Shit” I told her. “I gotta share my bed with a boooooooy. I gotta shave, and keep myself clean. Cook meals and look pretty when he comes home”  for those of you that don’t know my sense of humor, this was mostly in fun. “UGH! This whole wife thing is SOOOO much work!”

“HA!” she responded. “You’re just an overpaid hooker!”

Those words sparked an idea in me. “Oh My Gawd!” I screeched -yes out loud and on the screen- ” I should dress up like a hooker and pick him up from the airport in a cab! We can make out all the way home!”

“Best.Idea.Ever” came across my screen. Followed by “Tell him I said ‘You’re welcome’ when you’re done ;)”

With that I set off on a mission to greet The Mr at the airport clean, shaved and dressed to kill. The entire time I was getting ready I was messaging my girls for support.  Messages like “OMG do I REALLY have to shave for this?!” and “I just realized I’m really old. There are NO hooker clothes in my closet! How does that happen?!” followed by countless responses of giggles and more dark humor sent back to me as I got ready  kept me motivated so I could finish the task at hand.

I didn’t show up at the airport dressed like a hooker. I’m not kidding, there are NO hooker clothes in my closet! But I did wear a dress. I did shave. I even put on some makeup. And when the cab got to my house, I was in such a rush to get out the door I left my shoes behind. We didn’t make out in the cab like I had intended. (we both kind of thought it would be weird with some stranger in the front seat…) but we did hold each other the entire ride home.

We didn’t speak. We didn’t look to our phones for entertainment. We didn’t unlock our eyes or our grip. We just sat there quietly, the exhaustion and frustration from our separation easing it’s way from our bodies as we drove home in our comfortable, happy, memorable moment. The wear of his absence disappeared with each mile and once again all was right with the world.

Stepping Up to the Soapbox on Part time Parenting

I’m blessed to have friends from all different phases of life surrounding me all the time. From the young, newly married to the marriage lifers and single peeps and some that are divorced or single parents, to those who have never had kids.Getting them together for a fun night of gossip and gorging out on pizza is normally the highlight of my week.

Their perspectives are insightful, encouraging and well….Honest. I hang on to every word, laughing and filled with relief when I realize I am not the only one who feels or thinks “that” way. Not once have I ever walked away from a night with them angry or disappointed.

Till recently.

The gathering of the minds had begun. Those of us with children were rounding em up and placing food before them while those who were lucky enough to be away from their children or didn’t have any were in the living room laughing over beer and previews for the upcoming movies when a good friend and full time single dad swatted his 2 year olds butt after trying repeatedly to get the boy to sit in his chair so he could eat. The swat was followed with a raised voice telling him it would get worse if he didn’t listen.

Everything went silent.

The other “full time” parents continued on with their routine, instructing their kids to eat and try not to make a mess. Watching the previews, etc. But somehow this moment struck a nerve with one of the “part time” parents. (when I say “part time” I mean like she sees her kid once a month for 2 hours at a restaurant.) Who in turn, said to another “part time” parent ( this one with more experience being that he gets to see his daughter 3 hours a week and every other weekend) ” You should NEVER raise your voice or spank your 2 year old. I don’t care what they’re doing” Naturally the part time parents agreed.

To those SPECIFIC types of parents, who aren’t there for their baths every day, don’t get to read them their bed time stories, don’t have to clean up behind their kids all day everyday and will see 1/4 of the meltdowns that actually occur on a daily basis I say this.

Shut the fuck up.

I get that your heart is broken because you are missing important moments with your children. I get that you feel like half a person when your children are not around. I get that it truly does hurt for you and this pain you feel will never go away. I get all of those things and I could never imagine the loss you walk around with everyday. You get points for breathing.

But don’t you dare stand there and pull a “holier than thou card” on a person who can’t even take a shit without a baby in their lap. You’re the fun parent. The one that swoops in every couple of days and gives their child treats and takes them places the full time parent can’t afford to go, and will probably never try because when the day is over and the kids are whiny and exhausted and the full time parent is spent from chasing them, it doesn’t end for them. But the part time parent on the other hand,  gets to drop them off, go home and take a nap before going out with their friends later that night.

Yes part time parent, you will never raise your voice or spank your kids. Because when you get to celebrate school events and accomplishments with your kids you’re the one at the end of the race. The one cheering from the sidelines and taking all the credit while the full time parent sits at the kitchen table for  hours a night practicing and re-practicing the kids lines for the school play or finishing up the finishing touches on the school project they’ve been working on for  months. Despite the childs screaming fits that they don’t wanna work on the project, they wanna go play.

You’re the parent who isn’t looked down on at work because you missed 5 days last month when your child was ill. The parent with the spotless house filled with yummy treats because you don’t have to pay the dentist bill or stay up all night while they puke from eating to much candy. You’re  the parent with the nice clothes who has never had to get up 2 hours earlier on a weekday to get yourself and your child dressed so you could go to work. You don’t leave your home covered in food stains and spilled milk. Or listen to Radio Disney with screaming children in traffic jams.

You make parenting look easy. Because, for you it is.

You have no idea what parenting really is

Smile Damn It

I stumbled across this awe inspiring beauty on facebook a few weeks ago and suddenly became a mom on a mission.

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This would be mine. Oh yes, it would be mine.

With an idea in mind and two beautiful children to play “dress up” with, I was far to eager to get started. I decided that the best time for this fun day of picture taking would be during the kids Spring Break and told my oldest two my plans weeks before hand; pulling up the picture to give for reference.

“Isn’t it sooooooo pretty?!” I cooed.

In the days leading up to our photo session I mentioned the picture repeatedly, plotted out where I could take the picture in my home  and researched photo editing sites that would make it possible. Everyone knew my plan.

So when I finally had my little back drop set up and area taped off so I knew where everyone would have to stand, what time of day would have the best lighting, etc and got Kid 1 and Kid 2 on scene I was flabbergasted they didn’t share in my excitement.

No. No. My models were not excited at all. They were distant, mean and just down right a chore to be with. My fuse went up in smoke. And it went fast! So when my pictures began showing on my viewer screen with disdain and unhappiness on their faces I too began showing disdain and unhappiness. These faces were NOT on my agenda!

SANY0032

(like seriously?! WHAAAAT is that?!!So forced. So blah!)

My gentle coaxing for a fun and entertaining afternoon taking pictures together turned into that of which a bridezilla would be ashamed of.

“Turn your head to the right-NOOOOOO not that way TO THE RIGHT!” and “God bless it guys your arm should be below your chin!”or “SMILE GOD DAMN IT! We’re taking pictures to capture who you are and how much fun we’re having!!” were just a few of the hoarse commands barked over and over again. And when I discovered I couldn’t edit what I did have to fit properly into the heart shape I was going for…. OR Lord. No one should hear the words that came out of my mouth that day.

Like ever.

After taking a moment to calm my nerves and let go of my frustration I decided the best way to get the project done was to add wine. (What? It seems reasonable to me. How else does an adult solve problems?!)

2 glasses in and I still wasn’t able to make it all come together.

That’s when my 10 year old son came in the room. “Here.” I said. “Make me a heart”

And ya know what? He did.

Collages

Boobies!

One cold and snowy Sunday afternoon as I huddled under blankets, killing brain cells with mindless television, I came across an infomercial for The Chic Shaper. This awesome little contraption promised “Immediate Results that will get you noticed” with better posture, perkier breast-a-sis and cleavage. This nifty little clothing item peeked my interest.But I’m not typically a “spur of the moment” type spender. Especially when I see it on a cheesy infomercial. No. No. I’ve gotta see that infomercial at least three times before I’m all “MUST. ORDER. NOW” (standards yo. I haz em)

So that next morning when I performed an emergency run to the local Walgreens for milk- complete with my yoga pants, oversized sweatshirt (how else are you gonna run out of the house without a bra on?!)and slippers- and seen the Chic Shaper display at the check out aisle I decided it was fate.The angels had opened up the skies and shined a light down on me that grey, milkless Monday morning. They were singing,and their words were true.

“Girl yer boobies got no game, a little help ain’t no shame.Get yourself the Chic Shaper! Ahhhhhhhhh”

I got myself a Chic Shaper.

I raced home, milk and life altering girl device in tow. Ripped open the box and put that tight, boob squeezing piece of material on my chest. (remember the part above where I said I was wearing an oversized sweatshirt to hide the fact that I wasn’t wearing a bra?…..)There, before my very eyes as I snapped the little metal prongs together I watched my “handful” of mediocre flesh I call  boobs turn into limp flabs of lifeless,deflated balloons.

I burst into hysterical laughter. I didn’t know boobs could look like that! I didn’t know any part of a human body could look like that! That shit was golden. It had to be shared. It just had too.Thankfully, I had a friend in my kitchen, unknowingly eating a bowl of cereal.

“AMANDA!” I screamed running down the stairs laughing hysterically. “A.Man.Da.” I shrieked lifting up my sweatshirt.

From behind the thick fabric of maroon fleece I’d pulled to my face I heard milk release from her mouth.Spatting for air and a high pitched “WHAAAAAAT is that?!”

“My boobies!” I laughed.

“That is not ‘boobies'”

Needless to say, the chic shaper was placed into my underwear drawer, never to be heard from again.

UNTIL!!!! (ta daaaaaaa!!! *Spirit fingers!*) Yesterday.
I guess I should probably explain that last week was the 1st time in two years I’d dare put on a bikini. What can I say? Pregnancy,labor and breastfeeding , followed by a year of clothing covered in what can only be described as goo has made me fear any type of clothing that isn’t stretchy and made of cotton.
But I put on that bikini. And I took that baby into the pool. BOTH The baby AND the bikini. I even let my oldest son take a picture so I could document our now 1 year old daughters first dip.That’s when I seen what was once my boobs. It was a sad,sad, moment for me. Whatever I thought I didn’t have before, was just…..Kinda hangin there. All droopy and white from no sun exposure. All “welcome to your 30s, bet cha didn’t know your skin could sag like that did ya?!” I was forced to rethink my position on boob jobs.
Sigh….
So yesterday, when I realized I was going to a birthday dinner for a good friend, I panicked and frantically began throwing clothes around in search of something that was kind enough to cover my saggy skin but still allow me to feel sexy. -Ya know what? Sexy is the wrong word for it- Just human. Like a person that gets to have adult conversations, doesn’t leave her house in stained clothes, is current on world events and isn’t chased by a screaming 1 year old as she shuffles thru the house to make a cup of coffee, kind of human. I wanted to feel seen. Appreciated. Confident. The way I did before I decided to be a grown up, get married and have kids.When I stumbled across my Chic Shaper, I thought “ah hell. Can’t get any worse” And put it on. But this time OVER my bra.
When I walked into that restaurant, I wasn’t just Mommy, or The Mr’s wife. I was me. It was great. I even got compliments from the friends I was with. -yes boys, women can compliment each other on our boobs and not get slapped.- One newcomer to the group even asked if my boobs were real!
When I got home, I was feeling a little frisky and  tried to Skype The Mr hoping to get his attention since he’s out of town. It didn’t work out. Soooooo I sat around the house for a few more hours in my outfit, feeling like Cinderella, waiting for the clock to strike midnight.It did and I was back into my tank top and sweats and climbing into bed.
I woke up this morning and was once again Mommy. The Mr’s wife.- The diaper changing, stained clothes wearing, don’t get to go to the bathroom without company piece of furniture that everyone in the house passes by without a second thought, (unless they need something) that I was the day before.
But this time, when I put on my ripped jeans and usual tank top, I also put on the Chic Shaper. Granted, the make up is off, and I’m just folding laundry and chasing my 1 year old all day, but it still feels pretty darn good.

Raising Little Girl Ninjas. ( child rearing as a rape survivor )

When the idea to write this began, the content in my head was light, friendly, filled with cuss words and dripping with sarcasm. But now, sitting at my keyboard, the reality of opening up about such an important subject is forcing me to rethink my words.

I am a mom. A confused, loud, clumsy mom. Covered with imperfections and fears I try desperately to not pass down to my children. Especially my young, beautiful, intelligent, ready to take on the world daughters. For them, I pray for opportunity to always be in their favor. That they know love and kindness. That they experience joy and beauty so intense their hearts swell and tears flow freely. The same way I experience joy and beauty every time I see their faces.

But the reality is they will experience the ugliness of humanity at some point in their lives. More so as they get older. As a mother, I want to shield my children from reality. Keep them in a bubble, block them from the horrors of life. As an adult, I know this is impossible. So instead, I try to prepare them with stories of my bad choices, acknowledgement of pressures they will soon face and discussions on possible resolutions to situations they may find themselves in. Every conversation ends with the same statement.

“I love you. I need you in my life. A world without you is a world I can’t live in.That will never change. So when you’re out there, facing these things, remember you are never alone. Come to me always”

This parenting technique is not often met with enthusiasm. In fact, on many occasions, when informed of my decision to have these discussions with my kids I’m met with dropped mouths and looks of complete horror. But this is the reality, 1 in 4 girls ( and 1 in 6 boys!) will be sexually assaulted before they turn 18. 1 in 3 women will be raped in their lifetimes. (http://www.rvap.org/_docs/pdf_documents/sexual%20assault%20statistics.pdf)

I am one of them. It’s funny to me that even now, when I think of rape, I picture violence, fear and strangers when none of that is what I experienced. I was young (15) I was naive, and all too eager to go to my first house party. It’s mind boggling how quickly the vultures start swarming when intoxication hits a young, clueless girl. I could relive each soul stomping moment thru words I type out on a keyboard, but to be honest, I don’t think my psyche could handle the trauma. Even 17 years later, that violence free, barely conscious moment when an acquaintance ignored my pleas to stop still leaves me shaken and teary eyed. Desperate for the memory to stop.

I was young. I was naive. I was too trusting.I was drunk.

Am I saying I deserved it? NO

I don’t care how drunk, how slutty they were dressed or what a person was doing with you physically before they said no, once the word “no” is out there, It. Means. No.

While the memory will always remove the air from my lungs and fill me with dread and regret I will never get a “redo”. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t learn anything.

For me, I learned to never drink something I didn’t make or open myself, always have a “babysitter” (100% sober person watching over the group) and to do everything I can to make sure I am always alert and aware of what is going on around me.

To my children, this means long , honest conversations about what they might face someday. Pleas for them to do what they can to protect themselves and equipping them with self defense techniques to protect them when all else fails.

I was lucky to find an instructor that understands the reality of the world and refuses to sugar coat anything. Through his training-both as a student who studied under the some if the greatest instructors in the world, and as a Sensi- my children are stronger, braver and wiser than I will ever be.

That is the purpose of a mother after all right? To make your children stronger, wiser, better versions of yourself?

Thanks to his teachings, I am raising bad asses.

Thanks to his teachings, I am raising ninjas.

Because when the shit hits the fan, I want to know my daughters can do this; ( yep, that’s a girl from our dojo, Bratchers Karate. Can your kid do this? Wouldn’t you sleep easier knowing they could?)

Somebody Pissed in My Apple Juice

Yesterday, while I was folding laundry, “The Mr” pranced into our family room obviously excited about something. Without a word he scooped my hand into his and pulled me up from the couch. As we began our walk towards the front door I became curious as to what was making him so happy.

“Where are we going” I asked, his obvious excitement creeping in

“Shhhhh” he hissed. Turning into our darkened den just off the entryway to our home.

“OH MY GOSH!” I exclaimed ” Are we going into the den to make out like teenagers?!”

He dropped my hand, his excitement seeming to drain for a second before he pointed into the glass home that contained one of our tortoises. “Frank is eeeeeeeeaating.” He whispered. “Frank the Tank” is the youngest of our two tortoises.” I know how much you love to watch Frank eat. LOOK!” he cried.

The Mr. was right. The very simple act of watching Frank the Tank eat does in fact make me smile. This episode was not a let down. However, as I sat there smiling like a dope watching Frank open his tiny toothless mouth to devour that large,red, delicious apple a dark thought crept into my mind. I could not remember the last time I’d made out “like a high school kid” with my husband.

How is that even possible?! I’m not talking about those “can I rub your back” make out sessions done just before bed. (we all know where that leads….) I’m talking about like, no kidding, heart racing, hands flailing,lip numbing, don’t come up for air till your face is purple, kind of make out sessions. The ones that fill you with a rush of youthfulness that even I must admit has long since passed.

Suddenly, I was looking at The Mr. like he was a slab of meat for the taking. Eyebrows arched, head cocked to the right, full on stare down as I contemplated my next move. Turning to face him, I dragged my hand across his chest, stopping just at his heart. I began to push him gently to the sofa.

“What’s up babe?” he asked naively.

“Shhhhh.I’m being sexy” I whispered shoving him onto the sofa and straddling his lap ,kissing him deeply. My kisses were met eagerly, our worry about being caught by our children slowly subsiding as we began to enjoy each other in this rare episode of spontaneity.

Just as we began to relax and fall into the roles of “high school kids making out” reality walked into the room and flipped on the light. “Mom? Mom. What’s the password iTunes? WHAT are you doing?!” Shrieked my oldest.

“I’m making out with your dad” I replied not taking my eyes off of my prey. “Turn the light off and leave this room now.”

I wasted no time picking up where we had left off. Cupping his face in my hands and bearing my weight down for balance.

“Mooooooooooooom?” I heard. This time from Baby #2.(aka the son) “I can’t find dad. I need him to get me a tool from the garage.”

“He’s trapped underneath me. Getting smothered with kisses” I answered.

“Ew. Why would he be doing that?”

“Because, damn it. I”m trying to be sexy” I mumbled. All enjoyment seeping out of me like a squeezed balloon.

That was that. My moment was gone.Any hope of capturing a glimpse at my youthful, perky self had depleted.That’s when I began to miss my younger self. The vibrant, smart and witty, never afraid to put on her bikini self. I wanted to find her and punch her in the face for ever taking her time, body and energy for granted.

If someone had told me not to take my youth for granted, to spend more time on me and not to rush into adulthood I would’ve laughed at them. Youthful arrogance will get ya every time…..