You can read all of the baby books you can get your hands on until they are covered in papercuts and your brain is about to explode. You can read all the “What to expect” crap that’s out, or even watch that atrocity of a movie- but when you find yourself waist deep in baby excrement, you will realize one clear truth: all of those books are full of shit. Kind of like your child was 5 minutes ago.
Those books and movies? They’re just not…. right. And it’s not just because all children are different- it’s because they don’t cover all the bases. They make it seem flowery and wonderful and clean and lovely to deal with tiny screaming humans all the time. It ain’t. Sure, it’s nice to know what some group of doctors think is the “normal” age to start talking (and then proceed to freak the fuck out when our kid passes that age without a peep)- but that’s not the stuff we want or NEED to know. Nope. It isn’t.
Every parent I know, at some point in the years they have little ones scrambling and destroying their homes, have griped that they wished (jokingly or seriously) kids came with a manual. An ACTUAL manual. None of this rainbows and butterflies nonsense. None of this “expectation” that will put you into a panic. The things that NO ONE tells you, but SHOULD, because while a lot of parenting horrors cannot be prevented- it’s at least nice to know they’re coming. Like a giant meteor heading straight for planet earth.
Obviously, there will never be this all-inclusive “manual”- there can’t be! But I thought I would share with you some of my knowledge, the shit I WISH people had told me and I can only assume they didn’t because they either wanted me to suffer or have completely lost their fucking minds. Either is possible. It’s best to be prepared- even if being prepared is knowing you are completely unprepared.
Here goes nothin’…
It’s okay to cry over spilled milk. It’s hard to clean up, and it’s expensive. It’s especially okay to cry if it’s breastmilk.
You WILL get pooped on. There is no if and or but, here. Well, there IS a butt. The kind with two T’s. BUT- It’s gonna happen. If you’re sitting there shaking your head, you just won’t know about it. You’ll have poop on your back and think people are staring at you because you look good. Nope. You’ve got poop back. Or poop under your nails. Never touch your eyes.
No matter their gender, they are disgusting. Don’t think that just because you have a girl., they won’t burp and fart you right out of the room. Don’t think that because you have a boy, they won’t smear your expensive red lipstick all over their faces and wear your bra around the house. When company is over.
You might consider yourself classy, with tact and a filter- but you WILL find yourself discussing poop at great length with the most random people without batting an eyelash.
It’s not inhuman for your tiny precious child to take a shit larger than their forearm. Calm down. And for God’s sake, stop staring!
You will love them with an unfaltering strength you have never known, but sometimes you will not like them very much- and that’s not only okay, but completely normal.
Don’t let people fool you- kegels only do so much.
Old pee diapers have the tendency to smell worse than crusty old poo diapers. Take out the damn bag regardless!
No one is going to lose sleep if you leave a few dirty dishes or don’t vacuum the carpet religiously. You shouldn’t either.
Occasionally, I know it’s hard- but occasionally you MUST put yourself first. This isn’t to say you’re “more important” than the baby/kid, don’t think of it that way- but if you are completely out of commission, who is going to take care of that wee one? Take you time. Go to the doctor. Take an hour for yourself. Take a breather outside. Take CARE of yourself, or you won’t be able to take care of others- and then parental guilt sets in. That shit sucks.
Routine is great. Routine is wonderful- but not getting your kid to nap at the same exact time every single day is NOT the end of the world. Took me a long ass time and a lot of stress to figure that out. Thanks for nothing, What to Expect “The First Year.” Not.
Most importantly? RELAX. Seriously. relax. Your kid isn’t going to be mad at you for one “fuck up” (in your opinion)- they love you. That’s all that matters. Don’t take it so seriously. Love, and laugh. Vent, scream into a pillow, and then laugh at yourself. Remember to breathe. It goes by too quickly, and you will miss it if you’re too busy stressing your ass out about insignificant crap all the time.
Those who have been through it- do you agree? Add the IMPORTANT things you actually learned outside of ridiculous books in the comments.
You know that feeling when you don't chew a chip all the way and it cuts you all the way down and you swear it's gonna kill you, but you go ahead have another right after? That's what it's like when you decide to have another kid.
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