Once upon a time, I used to be a great cook. I made elaborate meals, tried new recipes, labored over ingredients, and enjoyed the art of presentation. Then Nick and I would sit down, sometimes to candle light, sometimes with friends, and enjoyed our meal. We only got up to get more wine (in hind sight it was probably cheap wine) or to remove dessert from the freezer or oven. I took sitting down to eat, and complete, a meal for granted. No one ever tried to eat off of my plate; no one ever spit something they didn't like onto my plate; no one spilled their milk on my lap, or yelled bloody murder in my ear. These were the "good 'ol days" and I didn't even realize it.
Fast forward four years and three kids later. I hate supper time. It is the most stressful part of my day. It's worse now that Nick booked evening shift this booking so he's gone for meal time for the next six months. My kids are most unruly after nap time, which also coincides with meal prep time. And I'm screwed beyond enjoyment if I've forgotten to take something out of the freezer to defrost. Noelle and I follow a gluten free diet and Dryden follows an "I-won't-eat-anything-that-looks-icky" diet and Nick just keeps his fingers crossed that his left overs for the next day are edible. My meals are no fuss, nothing fancy, not really brag worthy in the Mom Group circles. It has literally been years since I've sat to eat supper (except when we eat at Nick's parents'. His dad insists on feeding Noelle and his mom distracts Dryden with pickles- allowing Nick and I to eat.) I get up constantly to pick up Noelle's spoon, to get her next course, to beg/bribe Dryden to eat something off his plate, to feed the baby, to change the baby, to get someone some milk, to clean up the milk once they've knocked it over, and finally to pop some Tylenol for the massive headache I inevitably get. A lot of nights I actually don't get to eat until they go to bed and my meal is a congealed pile of vomit looking crap on my plate.
It gets better right? There is a light at the end of this "wolfing down my food as fast as I can while standing in front of the stove" tunnel? I just want to eat all of my god damn spaghetti while sitting down- is that too much to ask?!
At least some things stayed the same from our pre-children years: I still love me some cheap wine...which is calling my name right now. Cheers!