My knee popped as I tried to maneuver my body off the floor, my neck cracked loudly enough to be heard across the room. I grabbed my lower back and smiled ruefully when Dave looked over and asked, his left eyebrow slightly askew above his perfectly adorable dimple, what I wanted to do now that the children were asleep for the night. We had the same thoughts in mind, being totally smitten with each other and all, but my body was rebelling. For three weeks in a row I was out on a Saturday night many hours past midnight, reclaiming a youth I thought I carefully tucked away with my Loyola pennants and Jimmy V’s Dugout long-sleeve tee.
I love re-imagining my youthful love of late nights and karaoke within my adult responsibilities, finding ways to get my carefully crafted “look at me, I am an adult!” veneer to peel away. But last night, as my body screamed reminders of aging at me through joint pain and nausea, I found so much joy in sinking into the recovery process. When I was a kid I would throw a bottle of aspirin at the problem and get out again lest I be the only one who misses something awesome. The best part of getting older is realizing that some nights there is nothing more awesome that snuggling on the couch, watching Netflix and discussing the weather. Letting my careful cover go in favor of authentic friendships is awesome; the real adult below the façade, the one who is learning how to be a friend, mom and wife all at the same time, is so much cooler than the vision of perfect adulthood into which I have been trying to evolve.