Barefootin' Mama in the Middle of Nowhere

Seventeen Year Old Boys in 30 Year Old Bodies

Paul had gotten a DUI charge just before we started dating. It was only a 24hr suspension but since it was his second in less than so many years he had to take a course on how not to drive drunk in the future before he could get his license back (which he had lost for a couple of weeks). At this course (which Paul proceeded to attend in cow shit covered clothes and his dad’s faithful dog at his side… literally, it’s a big blue heeler/australian Shepard/border collie and it laid at his feet for the entire course) the group had to brainstorm ways to get home after they had been drinking. Now most people had normal answers like “Call a cab” or “call my mom for a ride home” or something along those lines. Paul proudly suggested to the entire class that one should probably “knock up the old lady and then she’ll have to stay sober and drive you home”. A month or so later was when I told Paul we were pregnant… OOPS… I guess he took his own advice.

There is one thing about being a sober driver every once in a while because it is your turn… I usually tried to con our newest roommate at college who had a minivan for a brief period of her life to drive ALL the time because a) she wasn’t of age and b) she had a minivan!!! How convenient is that??? Usually when you are the designated driver you can have one or maybe two beers throughout the course of the night… At the very least you can have a sipping drink that you hold in your hand for the night and try to look cool. It is an entirely different thing when it seems as though everyone else voted while you were out of the room and you got picked to be the DD for nine straight months and you can’t even have a sip. Parties and drunk people lose their funny rather quickly. Paul however thought this was FANTASTIC!! In fact, he took complete advantage of my soberness and pushed every limit of my patience that he could… maybe he was preparing me for having a son… I don’t know.

In fact let me embarrass the boy by telling you a little story I recall quite vividly. Now if you will recall, Paul is five years older than me so he is suppose to be the older, wiser, more distinguished one in our relationship… or at least AS mature as me. Right?? Well, our little town was holding their annual steak and lobster festival…. the lobster are flown in just for the darn thing, which, if you like lobster is pretty awesome considering a small town in the middle of the Prairies doesn’t have the opportunity to eat fresh lobster on an all too regular of a basis. However, I do not like lobster… so I was going for the same reason everyone else was… the steak… and the visiting… okay, okay, everyone else was going for the rip roaring drunken good time and dance that immediately followed the food shoveling and I alone was going for the steak but I was going nonetheless.

Now, my best friend from high school had never met Paul… I think actually at this point none of my friends had… she had heard about him countless times from me and could probably pick him (or at least his butt) out of a police lineup but she had never gotten to talk to him or be around him as he interacted with me so she couldn’t decide for sure if she approved or not. Well, this was her chance… she was going to come to the steak and lobster fest with us. Hooray!!! I was soooo excited!!

Not only would this be the first time that Paul and Lacie had hung out… it would be the first time that I was attending a community function in our town as a member of the community. I was going to become the new girl and I wanted desperately to make a good impression so they would feel like I was a good addition to their town and include me in functions and rink duty and baking things for the town bake sales… I just wanted to belong… and this was my one chance. I got dressed (this was still in the beginning of my pregnancy when I wanted to disguise my beer belly as a cute pregnant belly) in something that made it blatantly obvious that I was pregnant… either that or extremely proud of my protruding alcohol gut…. and away we went.

Supper was delicious! We sat with some of our friends and had a good visit… I was glad I had brought Lacie as Paul was preoccupied with everyone else that was there and was sort of ignoring me. I wasn’t concerned… we were going around meeting people and having a good time. Then it was nearing midnight.. Paul was… extremely drunk. The charity auction was over and thankfully Paul hadn’t been as drunk as some guys we knew who were spending thousands of dollars on things they shouldn’t have been spending money on…. but he was getting close to that drunk. We had danced a few times and towards the end he was slightly tipsy and was becoming a terrible dancer so I let him sit down with his buddies again to resume his whiskey drinking. The conversation soon turned to the local Lions Club and how women shouldn’t be allowed to join (because this had happened in a neighbouring town) and that if women wanted to be in Lions they should be in the Lioness Club. Just to be a devil’s advocate I told Paul I thought that was rude… after all, the Lions club was much more laid back and all about drinking and playing poker than the Lioness Club and that if I wanted to join the Lions he couldn’t stop me. Meanwhile, someone had gotten into the Lions’ closet and found some old mesh back Lions hats circa 1975 and were dolling them out like free pie. I most definitely snatched one up and started wearing it around. Paul was too drunk to notice.

At around 2am I decided it was time to go home. Paul was so sloshed he could barely stand up and last call was made so I rounded up Lacie, our hats and Paul and got everyone into the car. By this time Paul was so intoxicated that he couldn’t even do up his seatbelt. I had to pull the car over, sit him up straight and put it on him. We got home in one piece without an incident (luckily) and got into the house. Paul fell across the bed with his boots, coat and everything on. Lacie helped me strip him down and take his boots off and then turn his body into the bed so he was lying with enough room for me. I threatened his life and told him that if he didn’t leave room for me I was going to sleep with Lacie in the freezing cold guest room (that was once a garage might I add) and he would have to fend for himself. Moments after promising to behave Paul jumped off of the bed and ran (rather stumbled) to the bathroom where he proceeded to puke then rip the shower curtain off the wall as he fell into the tub. I heard the commotion and went running.

If you have ever wanted to question the direction your life is headed I can tell you that all you need is to be pregnant and walk into a bathroom to spy your baby’s daddy laying ass over tea kettle, passed out in the tub with a shower curtain smothering the life out of him and him too drunk to even notice or care what is going on. I can assure you that at that moment you will either walk out of the room and out of the house because you are convinced that this man is never going to be responsible enough to take care of you and a little child, or you will laugh, pick him up and make him brush his teeth because you don’t want to sleep beside puke breath and help him back to bed… all the while still concerned that this man is never going to be responsible enough to take care of you and a little child. And if you can sleep despite the loud drunk man snoring… you will wake up in the morning and when your man asks you why there is a Lions hat on the bedroom floor you will smile and as you walk out of the room you will casually say “Oh, no big deal, Lacie and I joined the Lions last night and this was the souvenir they gave us. Aren’t you excited we are in the same club now honey?!?!?!” ANd then you will chuckle as he moans in disbelief and horror. Because if he is going to drink like his is a seventeen year old…. you are definitely going to make him pay for it…

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