‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house, not a creature was stirring except for me, who was puking my brains up at two a.m. because I “accidentally” got trashed the night before. This was back in the day, when I only had one kid, who was 6 and all too excited for his visit from Santa. Except Santa was reviewing her dinner from the night before.
Now don’t go getting all judgy on me. This has happened to the best of us. When you are a mom, well, for most of us, you don’t drink alcohol that often. You forget how to drink. Your tolerance for booze is nowhere as near as hardcore as it was in college, where you could pound back a few without getting all slurry and sloppy. Moms don’t remember how to drink. One minute you are enjoying a cocktail and the next minute you are vowing to never drink another adult beverage for as long as you live.
We usually go out to eat on Christmas Eve. There is something romantic about eating out the night before Christmas, putting on a pretty dress and going to a nice restaurant, festively decorated for the season, holiday music playing softly in the background. Plus, this means I don’t have to prepare two major meals in a row. Afterwards we drive around and look at Christmas lights. It’s a tradition in my family, and it’s usually a lovely evening. And this evening was no exception. A bottle of wine at dinner, a wonderful meal, tucking my little guy into bed after and then my husband suggesting we have a nightcap while we sat in front of the fire and listened to Christmas music. And that nightcap turning into a few more than one. Christmas is a nostalgic time, we stayed up late drinking and reminiscing, whispering about how excited we were for my son to open his gifts. And then my husband busted out the egg nog.
It’s impossible to party when you are a parent. You can’t be hungover when you have a kid. They talk really loud and expect you to do things, things like not wincing every time they laugh the following morning and making them something for breakfast besides burnt toast. I don’t even like egg nog but this was one of those night when I liked everything. I would have drank a cocktail made from Nyquil and cranberry juice if it would have been offered to me. And it was during the egg nog that I noticed we had more than one Christmas tree, and that it was amazingly blurry. I don’t know if it was the heavy dinner or the mixture of booze but I suddenly found myself running for the bathroom and choking up candy canes. At least I didn’t vom in the fireplace.
I was rescued by my husband who put me to bed with a few ibuprofen and a glass of water. And then we both woke up a mere hour later to remember we had forgotten to put together my son’s bike. Luckily, my husband let me go back to sleep while he played Santa’s helper by himself, and my son never knew what a wreck his mom was the night before Christmas.
So take it from me, tonight when you raise a toast to the holiday make it just one. There is nothing merry or festive about scrubbing your toilet on Christmas morning.