ME: I spent most of yesterday spray painting a loft bed for my 5-year-old. Long story short, I kept running out of paint, had to wedge multiple hardware-store trips between naps and preschool stuff, and ended up inadvertently turning our new driveway pink. My arms ache terribly from spraypainting the whole freaking day away. Because it was breezy and I didn’t cover up, I also look like I have a spray-on sunburn. Alas, I learned that I’m getting so old that, in my world, spraypainting a bed is now tantamount to summiting Everest.
HER: Wandered out into the living room while I had the TV on regular television (that is, not PBS). We never have regular televison on when she’s nearby. I had left for a moment to switch a load of laundry, and when I returned, all I could hear from the tube was a horror story about a terrorist attack on a wedding somewhere in the Middle East. “The bride, groom, and four children were killed in the attack,” said the voice. Alas, she learned that people actually kill other people, including children.
HIM: Crapped his pants twice in one day. And there were whole black beans in it that looked like they were straight out of the can, which can’t feel right. Can it? Alas, he learned what it feels like to poop whole beans.
ME: Forgot not only the baby’s 9-month well-baby checkup on Thursday, but also my first formal banjo lesson. Alas, I learned that my life is falling into some disarray due to my lifelong lack of good organizational skills.
HER: I was joking with my parents about John Cougar Mellencamp’s line “…taught to fear Jesus in a small town.” It just struck me as funny that he was taught to fear the wrong entity. Isn’t God supposed to be the fearsome one, and Jesus supposed to be his more affable incarnation? No, no, my Dad explained. It’s Jesus who sits at the right hand of God, judges people, and casts the rotten ones out of Heaven and into the fires of Hell. Well, he didn’t say it quite like that, but very nearly. My 5-year-old was sitting right there listening. Alas, she learned that she isn’t necessarily going to Heaven, where her dead and much-missed cat Abby is waiting for her.
HIM: Got two new teeth, which blistered something ugly and took a long time to finally erupt. Alas, he learned that some pain can’t be assuaged and must be endured.
ME: Finally realized that I am stuck at 10 pounds over my pre-pregnancy weight, despite being vaguely hungry all day for the past two months as well as eating more healthy things like acorn squash. And more acorn squash. Also, acorn squash. Alas, I learned that the wine consumption must be cut.
HER: Until recently, she thought all surgical procedures involved private parts but certainly not the removal of anything. This goes back to my husband getting his vasectomy. I do not recall either of us going into any specifics, but we must have given her enough information to deduce that his “privates” were involved. Anyway, my dad recently had his gall bladder removed, so he asked her if she’d like to see the scars. Terrified, she declined. My dad went ahead and explained the essence of what he’d had done, and inquired whether she knew what a gall bladder was. Embarassed and worried, she nodded yes and said, “Private parts.” Alas, she learned that people sometimes need to have whole parts of their body removed — perhaps (in her mind) even their private parts.
HIM: Started spitting up again. Alas, he learned that sometimes you have to sit in your own cold, curdled upchuck for a while before somebody notices and cleans you up.
So, who has it harder these days? The kids or me?
I think they win.