I had a huge revelation a few months ago.

This all started a few years back–on a rare kid-free date night–with our waitress talking me into trying a new wine. It cost more than I usually liked to spend on a glass of wine (I mean, I usually spend $8 on a whole BOTTLE, but hey, I went for it!). This wine though, this WINE! This wine became my new obsession. I enjoyed that beautiful glass of red wine so much that I scoured every wine section I came to on every grocery mission I took for the next few weeks.

I searched and searched–but to no avail. Once I realized I could simply call the restaurant to ask for the label, I special-ordered a bottle from our local wine shop. I was so excited! Even the BOTTLE was beautiful. It was $18–a total splurge–but it was OK.

I had a plan.

I was going to save that wine for a special occasion!

Perfect! So there it sat in my wine rack, awaiting its special-enough occasion. 

Thanks to our good friend Murphy and his law, right about the time that wine hit the rack–I finally happened to go and get pregnant! Just the thing that ought to call for celebration, right?! (Well yes, but . . .definitely NOT with wine.)

So, the delicious Petit red wine got tucked away in our liquor cabinet above our microwave. But again, it was OK. . . 

I had a new plan! 

In exactly nine months (give or take a few days), I would get to crack that wine! What better special occasion could there be than the birth of my very first child?

I couldn’t think of a single thing!

My nine months of prego-bliss passed in a blink of an eye. I delivered a big healthy baby, and upon our arrival back home, I realized I had my special occasion to celebrate! I got excited for about 3 seconds until I realized–for the first time–that there was yet another kink in my plan.


You see, in the hospital, I had decided to try nursing that big baby. I had myself convinced that with my skinny frame, I wasn’t destined for milk-cow greatness, so I was certain he would be on formula within a week or two.

BUT–I couldn’t have been more wrong. To all of our surprise, I was pretty much a straight-up Holstein! Which was super, but yet. . .did not go well with wine-drinking, either.

SO. Yet again, the delicious Petit red wine of my dreams sat patiently waiting, up in our liquor cabinet. 

For. . . Thirteen. More. Months.

Finally, one lovely summer evening, I went ahead and weaned the baby! Hooray! My first thought was: I could finally drink my fancy wine! So drink it I did! I shared that bottle with my favorite wine-drinking ladies, and we savored each sip. I had waited almost TWO YEARS to drink that hard-to-find wine, and it tasted every bit as good as I had imagined it would. It was a true celebration.

You will never guess what happened next.

In the most perfect turn of poetic justice:

They started to carry my fancy Petite Petit at Costco.


So, what else could a gal do? I bought TWO bottles this time! 

Now . . .here’s my big revelation–after that wine win, I stopped holding out for such a special occasion! For one thing, I know I will never be able to top childbirth OR weaning my bull calf after 13 months. And these days, I have a toddler running around, outsmarting me at every turn, and constantly trying my patience. It doesn’t take much anymore to justify a good red.

Why wait two more years?  After all–

I now know that on any given day, I AM WORTH IT.

Getting through the day with a sick toddler? Well done, me! I think I will pour myself a nice red wine!

Toddler went pee-pee in the potty for the first time ever? Hooray! Mommy is going to celebrate with a glass of good red!

Got through the entire week with daddy out of town for work? Yay, me! Pour a glass of that good red!

Sometimes simply SURVIVING parenthood (or life in general) is celebration-worthy. 

And we are darn good at celebrating, aren’t we, mamas? We celebrate our husband’s promotions and our children’s milestones and their birthdays and their grades and their sports teams and . . . you know what else we need to celebrate? 

OURSELVES. Our amazing mama-selves.

Why wait for the perfect special occasion? YOU being someone’s mama is a special-enough occasion. Now pour that glass of wine!

(Even if you are like me, and feel pretty fancy cracking that chilled $6.99 Riesling most nights.) But once in a while, dammit, Drink The Good Wine!

You have earned it!

And even more importantly, you DESERVE it.

So on that next trip to Wally-world, mama, walk on by the Chateau St. Michelle you usually stash in the fruit drawer, and pick out a better bottle this time. Make tonight your special occasion.

After all–

Life is short. Why not enjoy every last sip of it?

Erika Wilson

Erika Wilson is a writer, artist, and author/illustrator of children's books living in Big Sky country, Montana. The only "she" in a family of six, she is never without inspiration for her writing or her artwork! You can find all of Erika's work and her blog at her website ErikaWilsonBooks.com.