Tonight is BossLady's last night of freedom. Tomorrow, her 4-month maternity leave is officially over! Naturally, this is an emotional milestone for her and she's wrought with anxiety. Having been away from work for so long, it's understandable that she's experiencing a flurry of emotions. She's heartbroken about leaving the Peanut in daycare. She's distressed about the projects waiting for her at work. She's nervous about pumping breast milk at work. She's distraught about not being able to fit into her old work clothes. And more than anything, she's stressed about juggling the responsibilities of work and motherhood.
But me? I couldn't be happier! Right now, I'm hiding in the kitchen and celebrating by drinking a vodka martini. Why? Because I'm an insensitive jerk? No, friends not me. I'm happy because although I share some of my wife's anxieties about her return to work, I know that SHE'LL HAVE LESS TIME TO BUY BABY SHIT OFF THE INTERNET!
Don't get me wrong. My wife is not a spendthrift. But there's something about having a baby that makes the BossLady turn into the Imelda Marcos of infant gear. I think her newfound profligacy is a combination of her love for the Peanut, the isolation of being home alone all day with a baby, the idle chatter of other young mothers and the fact of having free time on her hands. Or maybe it's part of the gathering instinct embedded into a mother's genetic code. All I know is that the parts of the apartment that aren't covered with baby gear are usually covered with an avalanche of baby catalogs. Who even knew there were that many companies that sold baby crap?
Anyway, I hadn't quite realized the extent of the BossLady's buying until two months after the birth of the Peanut. Sure, I'd noticed a few more extra boxes lying around. And the Peanut seemed to have outfits that I'd never seen before. But it wasn't until I came home early one day from work and ran into the UPS delivery man that I saw how my wife had been spending her days.
Just to set the record straight, the UPS man comes to our apartment building at 5:30 every afternoon so I'd never met him before because I'm always in the office during that time. But as soon as we ran into each other in the lobby, he greeted me like a long-lost friend. First, he called me by my name. Second, he congratulated me on the birth of the Peanut and marveled at how cute she was. And third, he turned to me and said, "Sorry. No packages for you guys today."
Now, I'm a pretty friendly guy so I turned to my UPS guy and replied, "Look. Just between us guys, am I getting packages delivered to my apartment every day?" My man in brown turned to me, laughed a little and said, "Dude. Usually, you get SEVERAL packages a day." What the fuck? Are you kidding me? Normally I'd go through the roof, explode into the apartment and tear up the BossLady's credit cards. But how upset can you be with a woman who just gave birth to your beautiful daughter, right? Needless to say, BossLady and I had a little talk that evening and we put a moratorium on her baby spending.
And the UPS guy? Thank God he honored Guy Code and gave me the scoop. I owe him for that one. Every once in awhile, I'll be walking down the street with my nose in the newspaper and I'll hear these two loud beeps. I'll look up and see the UPS man driving his big old brown truck. Every time he sees me now, he honks his horn, gives me a little smile and flashes a big thumbs up. Funny motherfucker, isn't he?
Now for some final wise words of wisdom...
Fellas...when your wife gives birth, hide all the credit cards. She's going to be a little disoriented from giving birth and her mind will be on so many things that she'll naturally be more forgetful. Stick her credit cards somewhere she won't find them (in my wife's case, the oven.) Whatever you do, don't leave your wife at home alone with a new baby, a credit card and internet access. Trust me on this one.
Ladies...if you must be madwomen and order everything off buymorebabyshit.com, be smart about it. Have everything giftwrapped and sent to you so it doesn't look like you bought it yourself. Or try sending all the stuff to your sister's house. Whatever you do, don't let your husbands find the receipts.
And BossLady...All kidding aside, thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving us the greatest gift in the world...the birth of our little Peanut. I've never been happier. Thank you for enduring the travails of pregnancy and the pain of childbirth. I know it hasn't always been easy but how can you argue with the end result? We make a pretty cute baby, don't we? I think we should make a few more. Want to meet me in the bedroom in 10 minutes and go for #2? (Just kidding!) We can wait a few more months! (again, kidding!) But the Peanut and I love you tremendously! You're a great wife and a loving mom. Have a great day at work tomorrow and always remember how much we love you.