I love July 4th. I’m a history nerd and emotionally patriotic. I record lots of Revolutionary War shows around this time of year and I usually get misty when I hear Lee Greenwood.
For years, on July 4 my hubby and I would to go the beach and watch fireworks with friends after a day of cool drinks in the hot sun. We would bar-b-que and relax. Good times.
In the days leading up to and following July 4, we never even noticed the popping of firecrackers or the whistling of fireworks. If we saw a premature or delayed firework, we’d probably smile and watch without much thought.
My mother-in-law has hated fireworks for years. She’s taken the phrase “dog person” to a whole new level. She’d be so mad that her lab was scared and hiding in the closet that she would walk around the house mumbling curses. I would shrug it off. Kill joy.
Then, I had kids. I loved watching fireworks with them. Their wonder and excitement was contagious. They “Wow!”ed and “Look! Look!”ed with every burst. It was so precious!
But, heaven forbid some rabble rouser shoot even a bottle rocket off a day early or late. And if some upstart shot one off earlier or later than that I felt fire in my veins. I had sleeping kids! Didn’t these people have any respect for a 7:30 bedtime? I channelled my mother-in-law and cursed under my breath.
My kids are old enough now that it doesn’t matter. I think back on that time in my life and wonder why I didn’t just let it go. One night of lost sleep wasn’t going to hurt them or me, right? But then I remember that to a new mom, bed time is sacred and sleeping kids are something not to be messed with. How quickly we forget the struggles of having a tiny one.
So, if you are a new mom and find yourself clinching your fists at July 5th fireworks, know that you are not alone. There are plenty of moms of babies and dogs who are doing the same thing. And take comfort in knowing that, like mine, your baby will grow out of the stage where the pops and whistles will keep him up and where an hour of lost sleep will ruin your tomorrow. But if your dog has been in the closet for the past week, next year you might just wanna take a trip to Canada where they still love the Queen.