Becoming a parent is a blessed and sacred event. Never has there been a more life altering experience. No, seriously. Things you could never imagine were possible are about to happen.
Presenting 5 Things Friday: Parenting Pitfalls Edition
1. Food: A. You aren’t eating hot food for probably a year, possibly two. And after that you may still only be able to eat it intermittently and lukewarm.
B. Similarly, your children will also not eat, but it won’t be for lack of trying. You can stand on your head and sing Yankee Doodle. They will still cry. They will, however, want to eat your food. See A. No food for you. Start stowing snacks under your bed. Now.
C. There may (read: will) be throwing of food. It may be thrown at the floor. It may (read: will) be thrown at you. Just throw it back. Do it. No one is looking. Remember though, you have to clean it up. So maybe not the mashed potatoes. Or the spaghetti. That stains.
2. Driving: Getting in the car used to just be a thing you did. No. Driving is now A Thing. It’s like MMA. You’re going in and someone is coming out black and blue. It's probably going to be you. First there’s the packing of every. damned. toy in the house. And oh for the love of all that is sacred, don’t forget the puppy book. And the water. And the snacks. And not just one snack. Three. And no kale chips. Don’t even bother with that shit.
And then there is the actual driving. The old adage ‘are we there yet?’ It’s a lie. No child just ever just asks ‘are we there yet?’ It’s a chorus: Are we there yet? ARE WE THERE YET? When are we going to be there? I don’t like this song. CHANGE THE SONG. Where is my snack? Where is my water? She/he is touching me. I want to watch a movie. Not that movie. He/she is trying to take my snack. [insert throwing, kicking of seat back, and random slapping here] Mommy. Mom. Mama. MUM. MOMMA. Are we there yet? Where is my OTHER snack? I don’t like kale.
This is all happening while you’re trying to actually get somewhere. It’s a wonder we get anywhere alive. Truly.
3. Sleeping: A. Your bed may never be yours again. This starts out pretty sweet. Aw, snuggly babies. IT’S A TRICK. We actually pushed two beds together to facilitate this snuggly situation. That was cute for a year. Then NOT SO MUCH. Now Ella is stretched out perpendicular and Max is diagonal and I’m against the wall in the bottom 5% of the bed huddled under a hand towel in a move I like to call Try To Look Small So They Won’t See You. All of a sudden your baby is a velociraptor. Don’t Move.
B. And speaking of moving: shit gets real when they start moving. Last night Max roundhouse kicked me in the stomach so hard that I woke up thinking I actually was in the MMA. Can’t. Breathe. TAP. OUT.
C. Also included in this category: The Sex. You won’t be having any. The end.
Seriously, babies are built with some sort of internal parental arousal radar. As soon as things heat up, i.e., you are 30 seconds from orgasm, they are waking up. All the way. Either crying, screaming, asking why daddy is on mommy, or all three. All of this is probably a defense mechanism to keep you from having another baby, because they are not into sharing. Ever.
4. MMA: Speaking of MMA. Violence is built into these little people. I swear to you, you can literally never once raise a hand to your child. They will still slap you. Right in the face. Not even so much as a glimpse of remorse. In fact, they’ll probably look pretty satisfied. Last night Max The Architect took it upon himself to build a chair/pillow/book tower to get an Oreo (he had to build a chair/pillow/book tower because I keep those babies hidden), when I found him crouched behind a chair with two cookies I told him he could have one. When I put my hand out for him to surrender the second, he turned into the Tasmanian Devil. Banshee status. He came out swinging. I went for cover. STOP SWINGING MAN. Take the cookie. Jesus.
That doesn’t even address the intra-sibling fighting you never expect. Just move out of the way. Survival of the fittest, dude. Good luck. I’m pulling for you. Winner gets a cookie.
5. Personal Hygiene: A. Forget showering alone. And forget bathing alone. And forget trying to get them to bathe. Just forget it all. They will fight you kicking and screaming all the way into the bathroom but as soon as you decide to wash your hair, they need to be RIGHT THERE.
B. You are also never going to the bathroom alone again. Go ahead, lock the door. They don't care. They’ll find a way. Tiny Houdini bastards.
As they get older, this gets better. Your 15-year-old son doesn’t want to watch you poop. However, at this point you start to consider what exactly it is that they are doing taking an hour long shower. We’re in a drought over here, people. Take the lotion and the Kleenex and no one gets hurt. With your newfound lone potty freedom, however, comes another unexpected price: daughter grooming. I don’t remember spending an hour getting ready when I was 16. So no more worry about showering alone. You’re going to be lucky to get a shower at all.