Number of rainy days in February: lots.
Number of times I left the house: few.

It’s lovely outside today. You might think we’d be going for a walk, but you’d be wrong. As usual, I’ve assessed the effort vs. possible reward and come to the perfectly reasonable conclusion that it’s much better to stay home and make some pudding. One could argue that I need a walk far, far more than I need anything resembling pudding. To that I say HA! And then I mention the cuteness of my child, because no one can criticize while gazing on a face like this:

And how can I be depressed while looking at a face like that? Yet here I am, parked on the couch, contemplating pudding. Not just a little bit of pudding, either; my plan, if I could be so bold as to label it a plan, is to make an entire box of Cook and Serve and then go back to the couch, where I will eat all four servings. Possibly I will pour all four servings into one very large bowl; this idea fills me with joy.

The main thing standing between me and a tub of pudding-related bliss is, ironically enough, the amount of effort it will take. Less effort than going out, yes, sure. No one needs to get dressed in order to prepare pudding. Getting dressed: a whole planet of unpleasantness all on its own. I used to have a good relationship with my clothes. We were quite friendly, my clothing and me. I’d flirt with cute skirts and chat up sweater sets. Certain brands could inspire torrents of illicit longing (Calvin Klein and Kenneth Cole still hold a special place in my heart). Sometimes I’d pick up an outfit on a whim only to discover in the harsh light of morning that it wasn’t nearly as flattering as it had seemed at the store, but for the most part my separates and I had a mutually supportive existence.

That was before. Before baby? Before pregnancy? Being pregnant at least was a dress-up party in and of itself. Fat and waddling, sure, but fat and waddling in cunning maternity duds! Maternity duds have a special language; they say to the world I am not obese, I am creating life! You must surrender your bus seat to me and claim that I have a “glow”! Ha! There ought to be cunning post-pregnancy duds: special clothes for the time between giving birth and actually resembling the person you were before you had a person in your uterus. There are nursing clothes, sure, but why must nursing clothes be either massive and unflattering or cost the same as a small car? If there’s any time in a woman’s life when she won’t be able to afford designer clothing it’s when she’s on maternity leave (or, in my case, beginning the strange and new career of SAHM). It’s not like the baby; people like buying clothes for the baby. The baby, I’ll hazard to guess, has more clothing than he could possibly need. But mama? Mama is wearing one of the two tops she owns which do not make her look like a turnip, paired with either some floppy sweats or a sad pair of maternity jeans that make her look like she’s working on Baby #2. Mama is not a fashion plate.

At some point I’m sure I’ll once again have a relationship with my clothing which does not involve a futile attempt to cover as much of my misshapen, flab-ridden body as possible, but until then: pudding. Yes. The baby’s asleep right now so the timing could not be better. Then again, there are all sorts of other things I ought to be doing while the baby sleeps. Things like school, or dishes, or cleaning up the cat vomit at the foot of the stairs. All these things are at least as important as the pudding, although far, far less delicious (esp. the cat vomit) and the baby, he wakes often and unpredictably. How can I possibly justify twenty minutes of standing in front of the stove? There are bills to pay, lists to make, calls which must be placed to the advice line at Kaiser in which I am somehow supposed to utter the words “I have Post Partum Depression” and then fling myself at the mercy of the Insurance Gods. (I spent a disproportionate amount of time last night trying to figure out the proper cutting response should the advice line nurse try to argue with me; I’m pretty sure normal people do not do this.)

The baby just decided that sleep is some obscure form of baby torture, so I guess the point is moot for now. Crying baby! Immediate need! No time to dilly-dally! Still: I wish I had some pudding.

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