For some reason, coworkers and others sometimes ask me for advice on parenting. Maybe it’s because I am old and this gives me the illusion of having a clue, which I don’t, or maybe it’s because my child has at least survived these early years.
While I hate to give out unsolicited advice (okay, except for cooking) I figured if I just wrote down a few of these fantastic parental insights, it might be helpful to others.
Great Tips to Prepare for Parenthood:
- Repeat after me: When you have just fed your infant, do not hold her way above your head and look up, wide-eyed and open-mouth smiling. Don’t think about this one too much. Just trust me.
- Consider upgrading your kitchen to feature a cement floor with a center drain and handy hose on the wall. It makes a unique statement about your new lifestyle. Save water by washing the table, chairs, floor and child all at once!
- If you are compulsively neat or prompt, congratulations, your deprogramming is about to begin. Soon, you will be normal without all that therapy expense. Again, you’ll need the money you save.
- Take a box of cereal and dump it all over the back seats and floor of your car. Try and adjust to this. For an extra helper, have your spouse hide a partially full sippy cup of milk somewhere in the vehicle. You’ll figure out where it is in a week or so.
- Borrow toys, blocks and crayons from a friend with kids. Scatter these items all over your floor before bed. Set your alarm for 3 a.m. Get up and attempt to navigate the minefield in the dark. Hint: shuffle your feet.
- Instead of having intelligent conversation with your spouse at dinner, practice repeating over and over throughout the entire meal: “Sit down, please. No. Sit down, please. No. Sit down, please. No.”
- Chase the cat, naked, laughing, and brandishing salad tongs. He needs to prepare for the new arrival as well.
- Have dinner with your friends who do not have kids one last time.
- Practice sounding polite when you say the phrase over and over, “Gee, thanks for the advice, I am glad that worked for you.”
- Park the car at a green light in a busy intersection. Try to find your Special Happy Place of Mental Calm while dealing with yelling, honking and screaming nonstop.
Oh, c’mon. Do you really think you can prepare for parenthood? It’s harder than you think, and better than you can ever imagine. Buckle in and enjoy the ride.
[This post was written by Beth Bader.]
David Wescott says
That was outstanding. As a soon-to-be dad, this will serve as my instruction manual.
Jolly Green Girl says
Thanks for the advice for newbie parents. As someone who’s about to give birth any day now.. it’s nice to infuse some humor into parenthood. I can’t wait but at the same time. I am dreading it. The worst part of all this would be if I did really turn into my mother. 🙂
Thanks for the good laugh. I have a 19 month old and due in August with my second and I have to say #7 made me laugh so hard I thought I caused a contraction.
Thanks, all. Currently surviving the Terrible Threes, I find parenting requires a sense of humor! Jolly Green Girl, you’ll be just great, nothing to dread.
Go easy on yourself the first few months!
Oh, sooooo sooo true! I have an almost three year old and an eight month old. I don’t have a cat, but I’m of half a mind to get one just to test out #7.
You can also just count out any ideas of personal hygiene you have out of your head. It’s really fun to be pooped on, peed on, puked on, have breastmilk leaking down your side, and sweating from all your leftover hormones. Couple that with not getting a shower for three days. Fun stuff, I tell you!
Yup! Mine’s three and I still look like hell on a daily basis. I’ve admitted to using the car window to dry my hair on my commute … sigh.
#1 and #9 are perfect.
Kendra Holliday says
omg #7 is awesome. I’m going to do that one regardless of whether I have any more kids.