I am starting to realize how much I look forward to blogging as I stay home with my baby. Sure, I get some adult interaction through playdates and other events but being able to collect my thoughts beyond the FACT-sharing (which toys to buy, how to make his food when the time comes, is there a difference between adult Aquaphor and baby Aquaphor on his dry skin, raising a bilingual baby, and OH SO MUCH more)…is a treat.
Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about vices, which brought me to a particular memory. Picture it: the year was 1999. or was it 2000? (even with “Mommy Brain” I still strive to retain a lotta detail.)
A few of my Berkeley girlfriends and I are starting to hang out more back home in Los Angeles, with our new label as Recent College Grads or Young Adults. It’s a whole new chapter for us, hanging out not as financial-aid collecting students but with our respective paychecks and apartments. We meet up at Miyagi’s on Sunset Blvd. My friend’s good-looking co-worker and I start talking amidst the loud music. Next thing I know he asks for my digits so that we can go to dinner some time. Props to him for stepping up.
He picks me up at my office in West Hollywood. When I walk out, he is leaning against his car with his arms crossed. (I later gush to my friends about how cool that pose looked and one of my girls says, “Yeah, um, eww. He got that from ‘Pretty in Pink’ yo.”) Anyways, Micah may awake from his nap any minute now so I best fast forward to my point. That is some pressure since I love tangents.
During our dinner, where we were seated next to a very depressed Rob Schneider, we get to know each other by asking different questions. He learns pretty early on that despite having met me at a trendy club/bar/sushi joint with my wilder friends, I am AS SQUARE AS THEY COME, and proud of it! He is perplexed because he had belatedly discovered the Ktown party scene and seemed to be looking for a party girl, a partyer in crime. But there I was, Miss Korean Lisa Simpson, practically about to play her saxophone.
“Wait, so you don’t drink, smoke, or party at all? Then what do you DO? What are your vices?” he asks, hoping for something, anything.
“My vices? Oh, hmmm…Good question. Oh, okay. Let’s see….um, I guess like I really like to write in my journal a LOT and get my laugh on with my friends. And have deep talks. OH! And I REALLY LOVE NATURE and like taking walks in it. And I love to swim…”
When I got home, I had to look up “VICE” in the dictionary because the dude looked so perplexed by my answer (note: this was not the only date resulting in some debriefing with a dictionary, lemme tell you).
VICE: 1. an immoral, wicked, or evil habit, action, or trait
2. habitual or frequent indulgence in pernicious, immoral, or degrading practices
OH, so it’s a habit but more like a BAD or “impure” habit, not my nature hikes and 200 meter breaststrokes.
This memory asked for some attention lately because FINALLY, at the tender age of 30somethang, I understand why people have, and succumb to, their vices. I am so in love with my baby boy that when I am not feeding or playing with him or visiting every reflective surface in our home to crack him up with his own reflection, I am looking at pictures or video clips of him or even blogging about him. After a long day together, especially on the bad weather days where all we have is each other, I miss him after I put him down. His daddy and I talk about him constantly and stare at him in wonder. I have never had such a fulfilling job and I wake up excited every morning to hold him again. Added blessing: he has been such an easy, jubilant baby.
Now having said that (hate to use that expression because of an especially clever episode of “Curb Your Enthusiasm”), I have never before wanted to unwind with a drink at the end of the day as I do these days. I am NOT a drinker other than some good wine with a fine meal so this urge is surprising. Not even while studying for the NY Bar or during law school did I want to drink for the sake of shaking it all off. But after baby is down for the night (he has always been a good sleeper, even when he was 2 months old!), I wanna get my draaank on. Or I wanna cram fistfuls of baked goodies into my face and lie there. Uninterrupted. Just lie there and exhale and not be called on. I understand vices more than my 20somethang self. But still I don’t drink because 1) I still breastfeed exclusively, 2) I like my calories from savory foods or gourmet baked goods, 3) I don’t want to want it regularly and 4) my wine of choice (Silver Oak) costs the same as a few large boxes of Pampers.
So while I wish I could say that these days, one of my “vices” is “Yeah, I just workout TOO MUCH as soon as baby is sleeping.” Instead, my vice, is sometimes more in the form of eating my half lamb, half chicken Halal dinner by placing it directly on my belly while lying down, asking Husband to just pretend I’m not even home for a few hours, watching a bad bad movie that is so unlike my life (Sex and the City 2) and washing that down with some milk and too many Martha’s Bakery cookies. Unwinding. Just Me Myself and I. Exhaling while I miss my sleeping baby boy…praying for the strength and grace and creativity to be fully present for him the next day.