Is there anything more annoying and completely asshole-ish for a parent to say? Not that I can think of. You won't hear me saying it to anyone. In fact, I couldn't even if I wanted to, since I only have one kid. But, for me, there are definitely things I didn't understand in my previous life. I would never make a generalization that no childless person "gets it", I'm just saying I didn't.
1. I never fully appreciated sleep.
I love sleep. So much, in fact, that missing out on it was one of my many fears about approaching motherhood, which was stupid, because God gave us coffee for a reason. However, I definitely did not appreciate the beauty of the ability to lay down, go to sleep, and know I could just stay in bed, uninterrupted all night. Like, if I had 7 hours to sleep before I could get up for work, I could actually sleep all 7 hours.
That being said, parents in no way have a monopoly on being tired. When I first came back to work after maternity leave, my friend started to tell me she was tired then backtracked, because she felt bad saying it to someone with an infant. I had to nip that in the bud right there. Everyone is allowed to be tired, and no one had a gun to my head forcing me to procreate. I made my bed, and now I need to lie in it, except I probably can't because I'm up with a baby instead. See what I did there?
If anything, I feel like a baby is an awesome, adorable reason to be tired. Insomnia doesn't cuddle up with you. Staying up doing grad work doesn't warm your heart with sweet, gummy little smiles. Babies are worth it (mine, anyway). There are much worse things that keep a person up at night.
|Babies have no appreciation for how wonderful sleep is|
Additionally, parents, can we all agree to stop complaining about getting up early? Did you miss the memo? Babies don't sleep in. You don't need to tell people that you get up at 6am, 7 days a week. The little person accompanying you makes that clear, and it's kind of what we signed on for. Enough, already.
2. The world is a scary place
Suddenly, every single horrible news story, I started thinking: what if that were my child? Even when the victim is an adult. Minor things worry me too. I was putting sunscreen on Dalton and I started wondering how many years I have of being able to enforce sunscreen usage. I'm assuming teenage boys don't slather each others' backs with Coppertone before hitting the beach?
3. What people say matters
Cleaning up our language seemed easy at first. Just stop cursing, at least in front of Dalton. Done. But now that he's actually starting to understand some words, I'm starting to notice I have some bad habits. If I'm telling Eric a story at the dinner table about how much some idiot irritated me, am I really setting such a better example just because I used the word "idiot" rather than some other choice titles? This child is going to learn how to treat people from us. That's terrifying.
4. Food is expensive
Another terrifying thing is grocery shopping for three people before one of those people is a year old. We legit have to provide him his own dinner, if we try to just share two portions, one or more people is left hungry. If I think I'm tired now, I'm really going to be exhausted when I have to moonlight at a grocery store just for the discount so I can afford to feed my kid during the teen years.
5. Family is everything
Ugh that irritates me just to type, because it implies that family isn't important unless you have kids. That could not have been further from the truth for me (and pretty much everyone I know). It's more like my awareness of that fact is just super heightened now. I've never been more efficient (and less social) at work, because I have this overpowering NEED to get everything done so I can leave as soon as possible. I used to scroll through Facebook while I ate lunch, and now I'm just like...every second I spend looking at pictures a coworker from 12 years ago posted of his dog is a second more I have to stay here working after school and a second less I could be at home with Dalton and Eric. But don't judge me if I ever like your Facebook picture during lunch time. No one's perfect.
|Always moving, always blurry.|
What do you agree with, disagree with, or what would you add?