I love a good internet meme or inspirational quote. One of my favorites says, “We’ve been friends so long, I can’t remember who is the bad influence.” You’ve probably seen and shared similar quotes on social media. These days I’m too exhausted to be a bad influence, and so are my friends (except a few of you—you know who you are!). Sadly, the only philosophical reading I seem to have time for lately is Facebook, if memes and phrases even count. Sorry, Aristotle!
My dinners and Girls’ Nights Out are less frequent now, often substituted with group texts and promises to grab lunch with the kids when schedules allow. A night out with exclusively the 18-and-over crowd is doable with some planning and 30 days lead time. A girls night in which the whole squad is free AND has childcare? It happens, but rarely. I miss the spontaneity of my twenties. Memes with awesome, rowdy, silver-haired women give me hope and make me laugh.
Recently, when the opportunity to go out with a single mom friend came up, I jumped at the chance. Literally. I actually hopped a little with excitement. When you’re a single mom, a girls’ night out with other single moms is like chasing a rainbow unicorn. Child-free time is precious and tends to be cautiously rationed. And the chances of custody schedules aligning to alleviate the cost and planning associated with a babysitter? That occurs about as frequently as a total solar eclipse visible from San Antonio. My mind went a little wild thinking about possibilities. We could get dressed up and try the trendy bars we have heard about. Or check out the new restaurant at the Pearl. Or be super indulgent and “waste” two hours watching a movie…in a theater. Fancy.
However, the week flew by, and being the busy mommies we are, my friend and I didn’t discuss specific plans until the night before. Trendy spots requiring reservations would have to wait. Dinner and drinks it was, preferably on a happy hour budget. Quite the departure from the days when my friends and I would have Thursday night, Friday night, and Saturday brunch plans by the time we met for drinks on Trivia Night Tuesday. At least now I actually have a happy hour budget rather than just drinking my dinner and hoping for a free meal.