A thin, staticky wail breaks through the dark stupor in my head.
Cracking one eyelid open with difficulty, I turn my head towards the sound from the baby monitor. Oooooh, a mistake. As my head shifted, so did the world.
The room is spinning. I close my eye. The room spins faster. Ugh.
The baby's cry goes up a notch, making the transition from tired and confused to hungry and awake.
With a crusty groan, I roll over and pry both eyes open this time. The clock says 6:15 A.M. My (equally crusty and spinning) husband next to me struggles out of bed to go get the baby. He brings her to me, I roll her close and as she latches on, fall asleep again.
Now it's 8 o'clock. I've gone from spinning and incoherent to painfully amused and slightly nauseated.
The night started with a bang, literally. "Saki, Saki, Saki, BOMB!" We slammed the table with our fists and tossed back the deceptively mild drinks.
The drinking and the laughter increased steadily through the night. Under these cicumstances, normally, I'd wake up with post-party-mortification, certain I had embarrassed myself beyond redemption.
But not today. Today, I'm hung-over and I'm tired. But strangely enough, I'm also relaxed and ever so slightly rejuvenated. Because it wasn't a night of pressure to impress or a contest of coolness. We went out with our friends (Hi!!) who have two kids about the same age as ours. And we drank with them and laughed with them and threw off the load of our normal lives for a few hours.
Charlotte and I regularly checked our phones for missed calls from the babysitter, groaned about losing the post-baby weight and laughed at our husbands. Tryg and Kurt snuck off, without actually sneaking, to smoke and roll their eyes at the eccentricities of women.
I don't even remember what we all really talked about, specifically. Fart jokes, karaoke, marital quirks, White Snake, the unholy joys of a toddler out of their bed in the middle of the night. What stands out the most is just that for a few hours last night I didn't feel like a worn down mommy with tragic hair, a jelly roll around my waist, a toddler crying at my ankles and a baby on my hip. I felt funny and feminine, a piece of a greater whole, included and wanted and happy.
We were home by midnight, happy and horny and re-connected as a couple. Waking up at 6 with a throbbing head, the last death throes of my mascara congealing under my eyes and a mouth that tasted like... well, like last night's beer, was totally worth it. Because aside from the ravages of liquor and a late night, I feel great and there's a smile on my face, even as I'm wincing in the horrifically bright morning light.
Thanks, y'all. I'm sure my baby thanks you, too. She's been strangely sleepy all morning... a little bit of leftover Saki Bomb in her breakfast, I'm thinkin'.