They say having a child gives you a change in perspective. They are correct. I’m not talking about a new-found understanding of sleep deprivation as a form of torture, “experiencing a love like no other” or even the development of your new pain tolerance standards (would you say it was labor painful? or just broken limb painful?).
What I am talking about is the acceptance–if not the active practice–of things you used to have no tolerance for, like:
Cars full of crap.
Before baby: So, you’ve procreated and now you can’t clean out your backseat? Really? Sure, I’ll ride back here. No problem. Let me just brush these soggy Cheerios off the seat and side step these three sad, gnawed on action figures. No, no, really it’s fine. I’m sure whatever wet substance I just put my hand in is not pee.
Now: This morning, our backseat inventory included: four books, two very large stuffed animals, a beach towel, a spoiled bottle of milk, two milk bottle caps, sand, one sock, a car seat the size of Texas, and an Elmo mirror. Don’t look in the trunk, it’s a mess. However, should we take a spontaneous trip to the beach, we’re all set thanks to the beach umbrella, a beach chair, two beach towels and the bucket of beach toys that reside in the trunk. Last week, we also toted around TWO strollers for our one child.
The lure of the Mini Van.
Before baby: Have you lost your mind? You birthed a baby, not the Brady Bunch. No one requires a vehicle that big unless they have four kids who take surfing and/or pole-vaulting lessons.
Now: Whoa. Maybe we need one of these:
Every now and then, I entertain the idea of a larger vehicle. The only thing that keeps me from seriously considering a mini van is Dave’s theory about getting a larger house, car, or office: in every case, the more space you give yourself, the more stuff you’ll end up collecting to fill it. If what we are doing to our four-door Volkswagen is any indication, we do not need this temptation.