I’ve been a mother for almost twelve years. Most days I still feel like I’m winging it but when I think about what I knew about motherhood twelve years and three kids ago, I know I’ve definitely learned a thing or two. So, with Mother’s Day this weekend I thought I would take this opportunity to share just a few of these things with all of you!
Giving up wine, sushi, caffeine, cold cuts, and hair dye is probably one of the hardest parts of pregnancy.
Pregnancy and childbirth changes your body forever. You may find a way to look fabulous after all is said and done but your body will be different. For me, no amount of diet and exercise will get me back my pre-baby body. I might have taken some bikini selfies twelve years ago if I had known.
You can absolutely fall asleep sitting up and not drop your baby. There must be some sort of alarm in a mother’s head that wakes her up when her arms are about to give out. It must be the same alarm that wakes her up the second before her child starts vomiting in her bed.
Speaking of vomit…
When a toddler throws up goldfish crackers or macaroni & cheese it often comes back up in whole pieces making for easier cleanup.
It is impossible to get a car seat completely vomit free after a carsick toddler re-enacts a scene out of the Exorcist. Febreeze will help.
Your child will have the messiest diapers of her life while you are out of state at a family event and she’s wearing her best party dress.
Pre-schools like to use glitter. They stuff your child’s glitter project into her backpack. The glitter will get on her extra set of clothes you so carefully stashed in there. When you attempt to wash those clothes the glitter will infect every other item of clothing in the load.
Three-year-old children LOVE to tell knock-knock jokes. They have no idea HOW to tell knock-knock jokes but they tell them anyway and laugh like loons at the non-existent punchline. They usually go something like this: “Knock-knock”, (sigh from me) “Who’s there?” “Bunny”, “Bunny who?” “Bunny Banana!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!” (another sigh from me).
Sending your first child to kindergarten can be terrifying. All of a sudden you have very little control over your child’s day. Just breathe and buy yourself something pretty with some of that daycare money you are no longer using.
Once your child is in elementary school you will have no money from Labor Day until Christmas because of: school supplies, school pictures, PTA dues, fall sports registration, sports gear/uniforms, Girl Scout registration, religious education tuition, Halloween costumes, various birthday presents, new winter gear, and then all of the expenses of the holiday season (including, of course, teacher gifts).
Lice are minions from hell set out to destroy your life.
The school nurse will call you to pick up your sick child on days when you absolutely cannot leave work…and yet, you will.
You will be unable to help your child with her math homework after fourth grade. I don’t care if you are a nuclear physicist. You will not be able to help her.
There is no place colder than the sidelines of a soccer game in early November. Be sure you have a comforter in your car and you leave enough time to grab a huge cup of coffee before you get there.
You cannot win an argument with an eleven-year-old girl, especially at 6:30 in the morning. She will inevitably go to school with a tear-stained face and you will seethe all the way to work.
This is just a few of the many, many things I’ve learned about motherhood. I can sum it up, I guess, by saying it is filled with difficult tasks and choices, it’s unbelievably gross, and parts of it are terrifying. It is also, however, beautiful, filled with joy and love, and one of the most important things you may do with your life. Happy Mother’s Day Everyone!