I found a way to help me get through children's birthday parties - bring along a tyke! There are many benefits to borrowing a toddler for child-centered festivities:
1. You have someone to entertain and focus your attention on the whole time you're there. (You know, besides the other 10,000 kids swarming around you reminding you of your barrenness.)
2. Although you may not be able to jump into parenting discussions, you at least appear at first glace to be a parent, so no one asks if you have kids. And if anyone does start asking questions, you can pretend to be that overly-cautious mom and run off after your charge like she's getting into mischief.
3. Eventually the kid's parents will want her back, so you can leave whenever you want as long as you say, "I really hate to leave early, but her parents are expecting her home at __ o'clock."
4. Oh yeah, and the kid has fun too!
In case you hadn't guessed, Hubs and I brought our niece H (my brother's 2 year old) to our nieces V and J's (Hubs's brother's kids) birthday party on Saturday. And truly, it made things so much easier! I didn't have time to be sad, there were a ton of kids for H to play with and she had a great time, and an hour was the perfect amount of time to stick around - for both of us! Why didn't I think of this sooner?
It was a pretty decent weekend all around. And I topped it off by getting my highest score yet bowling last night! (145, my average starting off in this league was 105.) Now if today would get with the program and start easing up I'd have it made. Nothing like coming back to work after a three-day weekend and getting slammed!