Nothing can prepare you for the life changing event that is becoming a parent.
I used to hate it when people would say: “When you have your own kids you’ll understand.”
“You patronising bugger” was usually the response swirling around in my head, daring my lips to follow suit. Quick, change the subject.
But as it turns out, they were right.
With a second child (and the last, we think – no, we’re sure) under our belts we’ve now got our feet firmly under the parenting table, though you’re always learning of course and there are things I’ll never be able to understand – like kids fighting sleep, what’s that all about?
Anyway here are 8 humorous (I hope) things that may be very familiar to mums and dads. You certainly know you’re a parent when…
- You get home and realise you’ve been out in public with snot stains on your shoulders. You’re hoping people realised it was one of the kids that had left several mucus stamps on your jumper, and not that you’ve placed personal hygiene at the bottom of the priority list now you’re a sleep deprived parent.
- You sit in your car on the driveway outside your house so the little cherub(s) can continue sleeping. This can often be used to your advantage. One time my wife took our daughter inside the house while I sat behind the wheel and joined my boy in the land of nod for half an hour. On another occasion I was scrolling through my Twitter timeline (what did car sitting parents do before mobile phones were invented?) when the postman knocked on the window, frightening the life out of me, in order to hand me a parcel. He looked bemused as to why I was just sat there in the car – obviously not a parent.
- You get really angry when somebody parks in a parent and child spot and there is no kid in sight. And I mean really angry. Shouting across the car park, leaving notes on the windscreen levels of fume. And what about those who park up and get out with a teenage child? Or old people who think they have a god given right to take up a parent and child spot because they can’t possibly park anything less than a stone’s throw away from the supermarket entrance? They’re equally as bad in the urine boiling stakes.
- When your living room looks like a crèche – all the time. If you’ve got a designated play room in your house then count yourself lucky that you haven’t had to juggle your brew while navigating your way past the many Disney princess themed obstacles that make your sofa seem a million miles away from gracing your backside – and even that’s likely to be covered in an aisle’s worth of Toys R Us stock. It never fails to amaze me how much crap finds its way under the couch. I’m sure my daughter is secretly storing it away in case I carry through on my threat that Father Christmas will come back for her toys if she doesn’t behave.
- You’re given the rare opportunity to go out and be a couple rather than mum and dad, but you spend the whole time talking about the kids and cooing over old photographs of them on your mobile phones.
- You leave a sleeping bag under your child’s bed in the event she shouts out “I want my daddy to sleep next to me” at 3am and you really don’t have the energy or desire to try and convince her she should go back to sleep, and that it would be far more beneficial for dad’s back if he returned to his bed rather than lying on the floor for the fourth night in a row.
- You consider looking in the Guinness Book of World Records to see if there is one for the amount of hot meals consumed in under 60 seconds over the course of a year while standing up holding a child. Then you realise you don’t have the time or energy.
- People say “well you’ve made your own bed” when you’re in desperate need of a vent because the kids have chipped away at the remaining part of your working brain all morning. “Made my own bed? I’ve barely slept in it this week never mind made it!”.