Being a parent changes you as a person. You are now responsible for another life and they become more important to you than yourself. You also find yourself doing things you never imagined yourself doing. Some of them seem bizarre and outrageous, but are generally normal in the grand scheme of parenting, it’s just no one ever wants to admit to it because they’re too busy trying to keep up with societies idea of perfect parenting. Here is a list I’ve put together of what to expect to find yourself doing as you enter parenthood and beyond that people don’t tell you about.
1- Going to google images and searching what baby poo should look like..
As a parent you become obsessed with baby poo. The size, shape colour, texture all mesmerises, worries and confuses the hell out of any parent and not even just new parents. I have five children, my youngest nearly two and still found myself recently googling what my sons poo should look like! You find yourself asking friends , taking photos of dirty nappies, and googling the shit (excuse the pun) out of baby poo pictures so much so google predicts what you’re about to write and gives you some handy suggestions of what may suit your search needs! Truth is baby poo comes in many shapes , colours and sizes so if you’re in doubt dr google probably isn’t the best bet. It’s always best to run any concerns by a GP.
Every breastfeeding mother will know in this first few weeks your breasts are like milk launchers with a complete mind of their own, normally over producing at night time and especially if the baby sleeps through a feed. Your body doesn’t get the memo and so tries to feed a child that’s sleeping anyway normally ending up with a milk bath for yourself and your partner in the middle of the night and it’s much easier to remove a spare sheet or towel than it is change the bed. Then of course you have the “fuck it mums” who forgot the spare sheet or blanket and can’t be asked to change the bed so just remind themselves breastmilk is good for the skin and roll over trying to avoid the wet patch. And no I’m not ashamed to say I have been the fuck it mum on a couple of occasions because frankly exhaustion takes over. That same spare blanket can also be used to double as protection for the bed from baby vomit.
3- Used your own sleeve to wipe someone else’s snotty nose.
Yes, I have done this as have many other parents. We all get caught short at least once with a child that has a sudden random snotty nose, or a sneezing fit leaving them with snot hanging down and over their lips and no tissues or wipes handy! As a parent you want your children to be clean and comfortable and will do anything to keep them that way. So when nothing else is available the good old parent sleeve all be it disgusting, works! I have seen many a parent rely on the trusty parent sleeve, snot sorter!
4- Used baby wipes for cleaning!
I do not know a single parent that hasn’t used wipes to clean surfaces at some point. It’s weird like the moment you first purchase a packet of baby wipes your whole world changes. I mean those bad boys fix everything wether it be shitty bums, snotty noses , floor spilages, windowsill dust, dirty shoes, melted chocolate patches on jeans, phone screen cleaners, they’re also great for squashing and disposing of small spiders and well anything you can think of really.
5- Cursed about or insulted (in your head or under your breath) your child.
Many parents will deny this one because there worried it’s not socially acceptable to dislike your children at times. Truth his although we all love our children all the time there are times when we dislike them and some of the things they may do! So don’t hide it from people (apart from maybe the kids themselves) , the more we talk about how it’s ok, to not like them all of the time the better. They may be our children, but we are still human as are they and you will sure as hell get times when they dislike you, difference is they won’t be too worried about others opinions of them, to voice theirs! Last week for example one of my children was pushing all of my mum buttons (they figure out what these are pretty young by the way) did I love her at the time? .. yes, did I like her at the time? .. no. At no time did I voice that to her as it’s unfair and not my style with regards to parenting however I was in my head shouting “please just stop being a little shit” while reminding her we like to make good choices and be kind to one another.
6- Used google as a DR and diagnosed your child with more than just the cold they have.
Yes, google is a wealth of information, but many parents are guilty of googling the symptoms of their child before actually seeking medical advise. A lot of the time this can lead to a pretty standard response of “visit your nearest accident and emergency department as soon as possible”. Obviously this is warranted in some cases but I have learnt over the years you get much more success by calling your local out of hours service or GP if it is open. Places like webmd, are not reliable if you are genuinely concerned about your child it’s always best to seek proper medical advise. You could dull down or over emphasise symptoms when using online symptom checkers etc and you will not get a proper diagnosis or help from the internet. Yes don’t get me wrong the internet is full of wonderful information, but using DR Google you also run the risk of potentially missing something more serious.
7- Giving your child calpol when you’re not even 100 percent sure they’re in pain.
Many children will complain of pain to try to stay up later, have a day off school, get your attention and many other reasons. I would be lieing if I said I wasn’t guilty of giving in and giving calpol in the hope it helped with whatever problem they had, although I wasn’t 100 percent sure there was even a problem in the first place. After all this miracle stuff seems to fix everything from teething to temperatures.
8- Billittled your own parenting abilities.
This one really gets me , it is done so often by people that are fabulous parents. We are all conditioned to think we have to be perfect all the time, in reality there is no real perfect only people’s opinions of perfect. All to often parents are telling themselves they’ve gone wrong, they’re doing a terrible job, they aren’t cut out for parenting. In a generation where post natal depression and depression and anxiety disorders are on the increase we all need to take a step back, a deep breath and remind ourselves we are doing our best. We all have bad days and some days want the world to swallow us up, but parenting is fucking hard work and all of us are winging it. A reminder to those parents that put them selves down… YOU ARE AMAZING! You have bought a child into this world and are nurturing it to the best of your ability and that is something to be proud of. If you feel you are drowning in parenthood , seek help and support and remember you’ve got this we are all entitled to struggle sometimes and some of us need some support to get us through it.
9- Wearing yesterdays clothes….
Yes, that’s right most of us end up wearing the same clothes two days running. Why? Because we are too busy washing the 15,000 sets of clothes our children manage to get through in one day that we just don’t have time or the ability to fit ours in the wash. Of course there are also those times you just can’t be arsed or are running to late to get something else out. Some mornings it’s a case of spraying some strong deodorant and hoping you’ve not missed a baby vom patch on the shoulder of yesterday’s tshirt.
10- Hiding to eat a chocolate bar…
Now we as parents are sticklers for making sure our children share. With this means they always and I mean always want what you have, not what they have even if it’s exactly the same as what they have got. The amount of times my children won’t eat their own broccoli but steal the broccoli off of my plate is unreal. Most, if not all parents have at some point hidden in the toilet, a big cupboard or outside the front door to consume the chocolate bar they’ve been hiding before the kids notice!
11- Lied about the tooth fairy when in reality you forgot.
The tooth loss is a very exciting time for most children eagerly awaiting the tooth fairy to visit. Life however has an amazing way of making you forget important things occasionally. Waking up to a crying child because they tooth fairy didn’t visit and having to play the “the tooth fairys wings got wet and she couldn’t fly last night, I bet she leaves you double to say sorry when she comes tonight” card has happened a few times in my house! It’s ok to forget sometimes we are all human.
12- Eaten food that’s been in someone else’s mouth!
As gross as this sounds as a parent it’s an all to common occurance. When your child is eating something and they’re really enjoying it, you sit in fear waiting for the moment they tell you to try some. Next thing you know the words “here daddy, try this it’s yummy” and you mentally prepare yourself for the sweet/crisp/pasta they’ve just taken from their mouth to be forceably put in yours. Some parents are the “oh that’s great” type of parent that grits their teeth and pretends to love eating soggy second hand crisps. Some like me are the ones that move their head away exclaiming “it’s ok baby I’ve tried them and love them to” or “I’m not hungry sweetheart you enjoy it” through purses lips, until the rather persistent child shoves it in your gob anyway. While you’re trying not to gag and thanking them at the same time.
13- Pretended the parks or some other place is closed…
You know those days you wake up after two hours broken sleep? If you don’t I’m not sure I’m convinced you’re really even a parent haha! Your child is full of beans and you just cannot be arsed so suggest a pj and film day, but you told them yesterday you would take them to the park! (Too tip never tell the kids you’re going to do something the next day just incase). Most parents at one point or another have resorted to “the parks shut today baby, they need to do some work on it” because while we strive outselves on being honest to our children, telling them you can’t be arsed isn’t going to be acceptable. This is the next best thing. Until the little shit next door brags about going to the park of course then you’re in deep parent doo doo!
14- Put the telly/tablet/phone on for a minutes peace…
when I had my first daughter we didn’t own any of these things and I swore I wouldn’t use CBeebies as a baby sitter! How wrong was I! I’m yet to meet a single parent that at some point hasn’t used some sort of electrical device to occupy their child so they can get dinner done, have a bath in peace, clean the kitchen or even just have five minutes quiet. At least four times a week I now pop the telly or YouTube on for the kids so I can get tasks I need to, done.
15- Put yourself in time out…
If you haven’t tried this honestly you should it works like a treat! I swore when I had kids I would dedicate my whole life to them and I do! However as a parent sometimes the thought of hearing the words mummy or daddy for the 100,001st time in a day makes you feel like you might spontaneously combust. What’s the solution time out, not for the kids for you. I have discovered many benefits from this seemingly mental idea
1- the kids learn mummies and daddies need time out to calm down too
2- they leave you alone for two minutes which is more than enough time to compose yourself
3- it can stop you loosing your shit when you can feel yourself bubbling up.
Don’t get me wrong some parents take photos of their kids sleeping because it’s cute. However I would like to point out why it’s cute , yes if can be because of the cute positions they’re in or the teddy they’re snuggled up too. Most of the time however it’s because it’s a rare as rocking horse shit that they’re quiet and all asleep at the same time. You use this opportunity to remind yourself they can sleep. They’re also used a lot to post on social media bragging about how wonderful they are when in reality you’re sat having a very quiet victory dance that the little buggers are finally asleep at the same time for the first time in a month and you can have a glass of wine, bath and a shit in peace (not all at the same time obviously, well unless your into shitting in the bath while drinking wine).
Every parent knows kids are renound for getting themselves stuck in stupid places . My kids are pros at it, most loving parents are so thoughtful that they don’t forget to capture the moment to remind them at their eighteenth birthday party so snap a picture before saving them. Then you get the parents like me and Chris that just find it hilarious and have to get a picture because it’s just to funny not to. I’m not gunna lie yes I have used the excuse it’s to save for them for when they’re older to see what they got up to, but reality is it’s funny as hell when kids get stuck behind the sofa, under chairs, when they’ve climbed up something and can’t get down etc. (Obviously there are moments when kids get stuck that aren’t as funny but I’m not talking about those).
18- Had a public tantrum with your child..
Ok ok , so not every parent has done this but I had to stick it in because frankly it’s hilarious. Chris regularly has tantrums with the kids in public and it’s right what they say it does stop the child and very fucker else around to be honest. Normally it’s B that is tantruming in public and Chris jumps at the chance to join in. He loves it I’m sure it’s just a way for him to vent his pent up anger really!
19- Let off a deadly fart and blamed your child…
Farting is a perfectly natural part of life, but as an adult it’s not socially acceptable to fart in public. As a kid however it’s fine so they’re that perfect excuse for you letting one out in a busy supermarket. When you’re walking around and just can’t hold it in you clench as hard as you can and silently (or not so silently) let it out. if it’s silent and you realise how much it stinks it’s pretty standard to then state “oh no have you pood” to your baby or if it’s a loud one “omg that stinks *insert child’s name here*”.
20- Made out your child is perfect in every way…
just a heads up no child is perfect but we all find ourselves lieing to make our they are. That dreaded question “does he sleep though” with the automatic answer “yes of course he has done for months” when in reality you’re lucky to get three hours sleep a night, but you just can’t cope with the parenting advise from non parents or parents with “perfect kids” like “have you tried to cut down breastfeeding” , “try a snack before bed”, or my all time favourite… “I did this with mine and it worked for all of them” from the parents that are trying to be helpful, but forgetting that every child and parent is different.
That’s it from me for now. I hope you enjoyed the read please share with your friends. You can read my blogs and laugh at my days via my Facebook page at…. https://m.facebook.com/workingbreastfeedingmumof5/all
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Side note *some of the images used in Thai blog were taken from google and are not my property*