A few odds and ends I’ve learned now that I am a mother of young children:
Your chances of leaving the house without a smudge of bodily fluid on your shirt or pants are slim to none.
There are some truly psychotic kids’ TV shows out there. I’m lookin’ at YOU Boo-Bah.
Three-year-olds can conjugate compound verbs. Be prepared when you’re driving and someone cuts you off, and you ever so accidentally blurt out “FRACK!!!!” Your preschooler might just inquire, “Mama, why are you fracking?” (PG version enabled for sensitive eyes)
Milk vomit: That stank is super hard to get out of couches and carpet. Especially when it leaks between the cushion cracks of your sectional (the parts that don’t separate). Good luck with that.
Long road trip? Your toddler will not let you down, and ensure that he requires a poop change every hour.
Noise making, light sensitive peg puzzles are the devil’s way of making sure your child is wide awake with the first ray of sunshine. Pieces get lost, and the moment the light changes in the room your little one’s peaceful slumber is interrupted by, “MOOOO!!! MOOOO!!!”
If you have two children, you really don’t get a proper sense of the sibling bonding that is being forged until you have received an eye and earful of the two sharing a joint tantrum, fully equipped with the same doe eyed, tear strewn, mouth agape faces that can now expel perfectly synchronized gasps and wails.
Having kids means never being able to find one of your 12 coasters when you want one. I later find them strewn inconspicuously about the house. I don’t know what it is about them, but my kids go coo-coo for coasters. I’m seriously contemplating putting some in next year’s Xmas stockings, after which I will undoubtedly be awarded Best Mom EVER.
Everyone’s ready to leave in the morning. You’ve got bags slung over your shoulders, your three year old finally has on her shoes and is carrying her stuffed animal, books, book bag full of toy cars (sans books), and cell phone. With a coffee in one hand, you reach down to pick up your toddler with the other, and catch that unmistakable aroma fumigating from his backside. You glance at the clock, knowing you’re already running late, and calculate in your head how much longer he can sit in it. You shrug, say screw it, hoist him up, and tell yourself he’ll live though the 10 minute car ride to daycare. You then pass him off to his teachers with an apologetic, “Sorry, I think he pooped on the ride over.”*
* They agree to change him with a smile, but know you’re totally lying. **
** You pull the same stunt with your mother in law, but she also knows you’re lying. ***
***The difference is she calls you out on it.
Not to be entirely sarcastic, I’ll end with one relatively sappy notation:
The first time your toddler looks at you and says, “Mama, I love you” will expand your heart to capacity and at the same time crush it into a heap of tiny-finger-wrapped pieces. This all occurs in one unbelievably endearing, bleary eyed, jaw dropping moment, and stays with you forever.