parenting

I left my babies for Bruno Mars

Bruno burning it up on stage.

We got out. Our first date night since before Reagan was born. Our first time being out of the house together, as a married couple, with no kids. We haven’t even celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary yet which was 12 days after Reagan’s birth. Taking into consideration that Reagan was born via emergency c-section and we were trying to establish our breastfeeding journey, the anniversary celebrations were put on hold. We’re lucky enough in that we technically have three wedding anniversaries to celebrate. However, none of them were celebrated this time around. Turns out breastfeeding isn’t a walk in the park, see my post on that here. Anyway, whatever!!! We got out of the house, baby-free, to see Bruno Mars live in concert!!!

The tickets for Bruno went on sale on Reagan’s due date, December 4th 2017. I really wanted those tickets and never imagined that Reagan might actually arrive on her due date. What are the chances? (Apparently there’s a 5% chance according to the ever knowledgeable Google.) Reagan had other plans. I went into labour on December 1st at 9pm and ended up in hospital on December 3rd with contractions being 2 minutes apart. Eventually, at 5am on the 4th of December, I agreed to have an epidural. The tickets went on sale at 9am. This baby needed to stay put until I had those tickets secured. I had them by 9.06am.

Berto was fast asleep in the seat next to my bed. Bless him, he had an awful time with those contractions and labour pains for the past three days. I’m sure all that gas he huffed helped. He deserved that sleep. Wait, what?

After booking the tickets, I decided they would be a surprise for Berto for our upcoming anniversary. No, even better, for Christmas. Together we had grown to love Bruno and his music. Berto used to sing ‘Marry You’ to me when we lived in Korea, hoping that one day we would be married. Awwwww … puke!

Berto woke up. “We’re going to see Bruno Mars on the 12th of July next year!!! I just booked the tickets. I wanted to surprise you for Christmas… Happy Christmas?’ Shit! I was too excited. The words came out of my mouth before I even knew it. He just laughed at me knowing how bad I am with surprises.

Fast forward around 3ish months to Reagan making strange with people. We never anticipated this happening. Leticia never made strange. In fact, she loved strangers. She even tried to leave with an Indian delivery man in Kuwait, going into his arms and waving goodbye. I guess we’ve never been entertaining enough for her. Reagan was different. Breastfeeding was just starting to get a little easier but Reagan wasn’t. I started to fret a little about the Bruno concert but also reminded myself that a lot could change by July. This was only March after all. Surely, she’d be fine by July. She kind of follows me for not liking people very much. She’s fine from a distance but take her from me and you’ll know all about it. The worry grew as her making strange wasn’t going away. I had had it all planned – I was going back stage to meet Bruno, he was going to fall madly in love with me and we were going to have a tiny affair. Not a huge one or anything. I would miss my girls (and Berto, of course) and I’d have to leave Bruno, broken hearted, to return to my family. Reagan was not cooperating with my plan at all.

The concert rolled around so quickly. The day of, Dad came down early and Reagan cried when he took her for a split second. Her little face! Oh no. All this week, I’ve been as positive as can be about leaving for the concert. I’ve been optimistic that we were going. But Reagan was crying again, 8 hours before the concert, at my dad who would be minding her. I thought, “I’m still trying. Even if we only get 20 minutes up the road. At least we’ll have tried.”

4pm came and it was time to go. I procrastinated and became flustered. I was nervous. Berto was nervous. We gave all the instructions for dinners, bedtime and routines. We kissed the girls goodbye and sat Reagan on her mat to play. I started to shake with nerves. We walked towards the car, got in and drove up the road; both of us as nervous as hell. How far would we get before we’d have to turn around? We were driving. We were on our way to see Bruno Mars. Just the two of us. No kids. I was on the way to having my first affair.

We were so nervous

We got to Marley Park. I called home to see how everything was and the girls were sleeping. There had been minimal crying and everyone was happy. Yay!! I was a little shocked but mostly thrilled. My biggest concern was that Reagan would get stressed from crying so much. But she didn’t and we were walking through the entry gates.

Bag check!

“I breastfeed so I’ve got a pump in there”, I told the lady about to check my bag. I’m not sure if she heard the nerves in my shaky voice or not but she was super understanding and simply lovely. Omg!!! We were at the concert. We were inside. We were together having some quality time. It was a little weird but it was so nice.

Through the gates

Time passed. We were enjoying ourselves, watching the supporting acts but I grew uncomfortable. Reagan would have fed at least twice by now. I had tried to pump in the car when we arrived but to no avail. I knew I needed to do it now. I went towards the female portaloos (gross, I know but where else could I do it?). The line was insane. Where to now? I headed in the direction of the First aid tent and was escorted to an ambulance out back. Again, everyone wqs so nice about it. It was my first time in an ambulance. I wanted to touch everything but settled for a couple of ambulance selfies. 15 minutes later, I was ready to see Bruno. But it was already after 8. He should have started by now. I had it all worked out:

5:30 Gates open

6:00 DNCE

7:00 Sister Sledge

8:00 Bruno

10:00 (at the latest) Leave for home

I was going to be home by midnight. I guess they didn’t get that memo because Bruno didn’t make an appearance until a little after 9pm.

Ambulance selfie
Who wore it better – Chrissy Teigan or me?

The excitement!! I felt like a little kid and wanted to scream when I saw him. He was already sweating before starting his third song. That’s just how lively he was. The show was full of energy and entertainment. We were pretty far from the stage but close enough to be wedged between lots of people. The smell of fake tan, cigarettes and weed were stuck in my nose. Berto asked a few times if I was ok. I was very quiet and he was worried that I wasn’t enjoying myself. Truth is, I was but I couldn’t help but notice how much I’ve tamed. My girls being at home without me consumed my thoughts. Internally, I was enjoying myself but for whatever reason, I wasn’t able to express it externally. It was strange and it’s hard to explain.

People were dancing on top of me and pushing to get past. They were doing what people do at concerts. They were doing what I used to do at concerts, the whole, “Excuse me, I just need to get up to my friends” in an attempt to get closer to the stage. How did I think I was being so slick before? Its kind of funny thinking about how much I’ve changed. I’m not so sure old me and present me would have gotten along very well. Unless drunk me was around to break the ice. Then maybe there would be a chance. Drunk me is very friendly. I wonder how she’s been? Haven’t seen her in a couple of years.

I stood there, enjoying Bruno and thinking about how I couldn’t go through with our affair after all. I also made some observations about going to concerts now that I’m a grown-up with responsibilities:

1. There should be separate areas for under 25s and over 25s. The over 25s would be allowed into the under 25 area, should they wish. However, the over 25 area would be strict on their age policy.

2. Tall people and short people need to be separated. Its just not fair. Tallies have a huge advantage. Actually, You know what, they should also be charged a viewing tax. Us smallies get it tough.

3. Cigarette smokers. Sorry, not sorry. Smoking is a pet peeve of mine. I hate it. Second hand smoke sucks and no one should be subjected to it. So at concerts, we should have the right to take and break the cigarettes from whoever lights them while surrounded by other people.

4. Weed. If you’re gonna stink of weed, share the love.

5. Note to self: buy the more expensive, “gold circle” tickets to avoid all of the above. And shut up complaining.

If you were at the Bruno concert in Dublin, regardless of whether you were a tallie, smoking, or stinking of weed, I hope you had an amazing time. He was fantastic with his super sexy smile. Bruno, if you’re reading this (you probably are, let’s be honest), I will eventually have that affair with you. Just give me a little time.

On another note, if you are a mammy with a Velcro baby who cries at every one but you, take the plunge. Its hard, really hard and you will worry a lot. But you will also be grateful you did it. Your baby will be fine. Yes, there will be heart breaking little tears and you will feel sick at the thoughts of them. BUT you will have some much needed “me time” and “us time” with your significant other. You both need that.

When we got home, Reagan was fast asleep on one couch, Leticia on the other. We were wrecked after our little adventure. I’m not gonna lie, I was yawning at the concert. The shame! So to bed we went; I took Reagan, Berto took Leticia, we gave each other a kiss, went our seperate ways and bid each other goodnight. And that’s how parenting is. Sometimes you make those sacrifices for a good night’s sleep and to keep your kiddos happy. Reagan hugged me so tight when I took her off the couch. She fed like a boss once we got in bed. It was probably one of the longest feeds she’s had in a while too. You’d swear I had been gone for 9 months rather than the 9 hours I was really gone. We snuggled up and dozed off together. Best of all, she gave me a lie in and didn’t wake up until 6.45am. Yay for being a parent.

First alarm
The snooze button doesn’t work round here

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