Things I didn’t realize until I became a parent

Babies cry. A LOT.  They aren’t cute chubby cherubs floating on clouds like those toilet paper ads suggest. They’re needy and whiny and utterly helpless.  It’s your new job as a parent to teach them that the world has enough to offer to make them coo, giggle and laugh.

Kids are disgusting and will happily live in filth unless you stop them.  Repeatedly.  It is completely necessary to tell another human being to change their underwear every single day.

The world as we know it, as we were introduced to it as children ourselves, is constantly changing; Pluto is no longer a planet, children use drawings and grouping instead of long-division in school,  and ”ain’t” IS a word.  It’s in the dictionary (see also, “ya’ll”).

It’s okay to let your feuding kids play video games once in a while so they can virtually kill each other instead of performing the real act.

A small child will without a doubt tell everyone you know exactly what you say about them behind closed doors.  Most likely at a dinner party or similar get together.

When you find the person you want by your side to help you raise your children you can no longer imagine what your life would be like without them.  It’s a partnership that makes you want to have all the answers to life’s biggest questions and gives you the drive to become a better person and parent.

A baby boy can urinate in the bathtub at an alarmingly fast rate.  Luckily your reflexes catch up after the first dousing or two.

Taking a hot shower by yourself  with no noise in the background, without any time constraints or sense of urgency, is a goddamn vacation!

The world is a scary, cruel, and volatile place that can take your children from you at any moment. You must keep them safe yet give them the distance to flourish on their own.

It’s okay to let a child be disappointed.  Coping skills are vital to grown up life and if everyone gets the 1st place trophy no one will learn to try harder until they earn it.

No matter how much your kids fight (even if they’ve drawn blood) they really do love each other.  They can spend five weekdays beating the crap out of each other but one day apart makes them miss their sibling.

“Because I said so” is a perfectly valid way to end any argument. …go ahead and ask me why.

Being in charge of a tiny new person’s life is the single most terrifying, exhilarating, heartbreaking, fulfilling, rewarding and amazing thing you can do.

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