No, I cannot leave my baby for just one night

I noticed it’s December. Suddenly there’s a tree in my house and people are acting grumpy in stores. Sometimes those people are me, like when I muttered, what the shit is going on! when two of my 500 kids were screaming and I dropped a tray of cookies in the parking lot yesterday. A nice woman rushed over and said, “how can I help! I’ve had those days!” and I just looked at the asphalt, mortified, and told her I was fine and started weeping. I might not be totally sane yet. Or ever. I might not be totally sane ever.

There are several Christmas parties coming up I’m invited to every year. I know I’m not going. That information didn’t stop me from buying a festive holiday dress that looks like wrapping paper. Just in case! (On me, you’d look at that gift and guess you were getting a bowling ball, or maybe a lady M&M.) I’m not going. I may as well return the dress because besides Maria Kanging my body by next Christmas, I also plan to start wearing things I have no business wearing. It’s part of my theory that prudishness is actually a young person thing. I’m hoping to sink warmly into my cougar years with ever-increasing slutty outfits.

Anyway, I’m not going to the party this year. I can’t leave my baby. I know, I know, pumping and bottles and sitters and one must live her life. Etcetera. I just can’t do it. Perhaps this calls for a list.

Here’s why no, I can’t leave my baby for even just one night:

1. Smugness. Why go places when everything I want is here? I’ve been told yoga pant jokes are over, but I’ll have you know my house is also supplied with Netflix and my bath tub. Beat that, Hunt Club.

2. What if she cries? I thought by the third baby, I’d tune out crying like how El riders don’t notice the urine-masking soap smell they pump into the stations anymore. They do pump that stuff in, right? How does it get there? Sometimes I pass a CTA vent wafting up on the street like, “deee-LICIOUS!” (Refer to paragraph one, topic sentence.)

3. What if the baby gets hungry and my breasts aren’t around for a milk bar snack? She might suddenly sober up to the realization we are in fact two separate people and the spell will be over. Just anyone will be able to waltz in here and take my spot. Next thing you know, she’ll think she belongs to the mail lady and she’ll be carted off to be raised at the post station without a care. THIS MUST BE STOPPED!

4. What if I perish in a traffic accident or bar fight? What if a sink-hole opens up under my feet while I’m in Lincoln Park and I get sucked into a subterranean abyss with a bunch of chads and trixies who are like, “tee hee, this club is so underground!” Not only will I suffer in the afterlife, but my baby will not get her snack in a timely manner. Because the worst thing about my death is a person who would never remember me would go hungry till someone ran to the store to buy formula.

[SIDE NOTE: If anything ever happens to me, can someone please tell my husband to buy formula and put it in a bottle and to rinse that bottle first and I think warm it in the microwave for 30 seconds then shake? He’d just sway-bounce the baby around the living room for three days wondering why she’s crying. Thanks. Also, toss my diary from my 20’s tucked under the basement stairs before my family can read it.]

5. Do you know how fast cells can replicate? According to Science, the answer is really, really fast. If you looked at my baby under a microscope, you’d see something akin to fireworks exploding at fast-forward speeds. Sometimes I put her to bed at 10:00 and by the time she wakes up to eat at 2:00 she’s in a new dress size. If I were to leave for a whole evening, I might come home to an adult person smoking in the living room with her eyes narrowed at me like, YOU. This is my last baby, okay. I just gave birth to her yesterday and she’s already a month old. She may as well hail a cab and be my wing buddy by the time this party comes around. I have to enjoy her babyness while I still can because once she’s in the tantrum stage and her poops are fully human and gross, I’ll be glad to hand her over to a sitter to get my drank on and flounce in that naughty outfit.

So. I guess I won’t be seeing you there. Pour one out for me, will ya?


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