There was a moment after a photo session last Saturday when I realized that it was totally okay to stop and get myself a burger and fries. I thought holy cow--this moment--the one where I can stop and go as I please isn't very normal--and yet it IS MY NORMAL now that my kids are older. They are fine with their dad, I don't have to run home to breastfeed, and I got a good night's sleep so I am completely alert. I recognized that even though I wished I WAS the one who had to run home to breastfeed or that I was completely incoherant from getting no sleep with a waking baby--I would appreciate this moment in time. I could take an extra hour to grab a bite of food and peruse the record store and enjoy what Seattle has to offer alone if I wanted. It wasn't as though I pretended I wasn't a mother anymore. It was that once your children grow a bit, you do have a tiny bit more freedom. They don't need you every waking minute and can amuse themselves much easier and were totally fine without me for an extra hour. I didn't have to rush. It was this weird awakening of my spirit and it was so bittersweet. And after that chocolate shake--I knew that right now it is okay to be sweet.