Before I had kids I really thought I had a clue about having kids. I made sweeping judgements. I made ridiculous statements (particularly to my long-suffering sister). I promised I would never do XYZ when I became a parent. Which you should never, ever do, because then you’re invariably forced to eat humble pie in a public forum. Like your blog.
1. “There is no way the baby will be in our bed. No siree.”
Was I on crack? Co-sleeping has been the only way I’ve survived the past year, especially during teething or developmental leaps. Of course I would rather Charlie is in his cot so I don’t have to sleep with a little person trying to kick my caesarean scar open on a nightly basis, but I’m not going to pretzel myself worrying about it (yet). There’ll be time for that when he’s 15 and our marriage is over. Yes I am joking.
2. “The baby will fit in with our life, rather than the other way round.”
A statement uttered by 99 percent of first-time parents, I’d wager, but you quickly realise just how idiotic you were when you’re sitting in your local burrito bar at 5pm wolfing down whatever you can before your baby cracks the almighty shits (literally and figuratively speaking) and forces you to leave without any dinner.
3. “We are definitely doing controlled crying!”
Mr Chick was dead against it and my sister tried to talk me out of it. But it took Charlie actually being born for me to change my tune, become a huge sooky la-la and decide on reflection I was happy to go and put his dummy back in 57 times a night. (On that note I also said there would be NO dummy, and look how well that one worked out.)
4. “We’ll have babysitters on standby and go out weekly as a couple to keep our relationship healthy.”
Not an idiotic statement, on reflection. Quite smart actually. Just bloody impossible.
5. “We’ll still travel EVERYWHERE! We’ll just strap the baby to our backs and go!”
Definitely on crack. I hadn’t realised how much I’d want to get my head around parenthood before tackling long-haul travel.
6. “I will NOT let myself go. I’ll get my hair cut every couple of months!”
Ha. My hair routine involves combing my fingers through my once shiny, well-kept mane several times a day, only to find bits stuck together with foodstuffs Charlie has sneakily wiped into my hair with his fat, sticky fingers. Usually banana, bolognaise or porridge.
7. “Why on earth are those parents pushing a pram and carrying their baby? Weird.”
You only need to go through one ‘I hate the pram’ stage to understand this one. You bring it anyway, in the hope he’ll sit in it some of the time and save your back. But you just end up carrying him and pushing the pram one-handed, which invariably means half the time you’re steering it into a tree.
Did you make any sweeping statements / assumptions about parenthood before you became a parent?