Or things that no one tells you before you have children.
A couple of years ago something became clear, children can’t sit on sofas normally. I started a Facebook page sharing photos and was amazed at how many other people posted similar photos on there. If you’re interested in viewing these to know you’re not alone search for Just Sit on the Sofa!
The fact that kids like nothing better than to lie upside down whilst watching TV is one of the many things that you just don’t think about before you have children. You get told about sleepless nights and tantrums and food refusal and visits to A&E with peas stuck up noses but there are many other things that don’t even cross your child free mind.
The threat of drink spillage in restaurants
Anyone with children has been there right? You are out in a restaurant or pub or cafe and your child has a glass of juice. Whilst there is liquid in that glass you are on tenterhooks, a sort of endurance test for waiting for the glass to be knocked over or spilled. Don’t get me started on straws or ice “just drink normally out of the straw” is a regular phrase I use. I mean why do that when you can suck out of the bottom of the straw instead, or in the case of a milkshake or smoothie use the straw like some sort of eating implement. Ice cubes only mean the inevitable little hands being dipped in sticky juice too.
Urgh, not only do they give me the hebegeebies but no one tells you about the painful days where the tooth is literally hanging on a thread but your child won’t let you go near them to pull it out. Then there’s the stress of the tooth fairy. I am pretty sure I’m not the only one who has forgotten to replace a tooth with a coin. That moment you wake in the dead of night with the realisation you haven’t done it so then have to get up, go and find some money and sneak in their room without waking them (creepy much?) We recently had, shall we say an incident, with our daughter and a wobbly front tooth that I honestly think was one of the most stressful experiences of my life. Hysterics don’t even come close to her behaviour.
Let’s be creative!
Oh yes when I have a child I’ll do baking with them and painting and ooh ooh play dough I loved that as a child, can’t wait to buy that for their first Christmas, oh yes and glitter it’ll be ace making Christmas cards for people. Motherf****** play dough, bits all over the floor, all the colours get mixed up and then they leave the lids off and it dries up – still it smells nice though. And baking, I mean it’s basically a case of “oh I’ll just do it myself, you’re getting flour everywhere, it’s not even mixed properly”. Seriously, that stuff is best left to nursery and infant school. Either that or banish them outdoors.
I’ll know, I’ll keep my old Folk of the Faraway Tree books for when I have kids. I can’t WAIT to read to them at bedtime. Now don’t get me wrong, if you get a good book it’s lovely reading with children. Trouble is when they want a Thomas the Tank Engine book for the 287th time they wear a bit thin. If you’ve ever read Thomas the Tank Engine books you’ll know what I mean. There was one holiday where we only took Room on The Broom with us and I am pretty sure I could recite it by heart still to this day. Then there’s the point where they can read themselves so you can’t get away with skipping bits “mummy you missed that bit out”
Hair today, gone tomorrow
Hair bobbles (or bands as I am told they are known everywhere apart from where I grew up). You can literally buy 100 of them and in a couple of days will have 2 left. Where the hell do they go?
Trail of destruction
Stuff, everywhere. Pretty sure kids just drop toys as they wander round the house like little bread crumb trails in Hansel and Gretel. I am pretty sure I spend 50% of my day bending over to pick stuff up and put it away.
I blame YouTube. My son cannot play a computer game or watch something without a constant commentary. Get him and a friend together and it’s like Stampy Long Nose or DanTDM are in the room (if you don’t have children over the age of 5 you’ll have no idea what I’m on about, if you do you’ll share my pain). Thank goodness my 6-year-old has stopped watching Toys and Me.
Spa breaks at Sainsburys
Who knew that one day going to a supermarket alone would be the equivalent of a mini spa break. Time to browse each section without two children fighting each other, climbing in and out of the trolley, nagging for a magazine or a toy or sweets. The offer of “I’ll push the trolley mummy” may seem great but the reality is they just push it into each other, the shelves and other people. Then there’s this conversation:
Child 1 or 2 “can we look at the toy aisle?”
Me “no you’ve got no money to spend”
Child 1 or 2 “I just want to look”
Child 1 or 2 “I just do”
Cue 15 mins of me standing saying “have you looked enough yet?” and “right I’m just going now”
I was in Sainsburys alone yesterday and whilst I serenely glided with my trolley past the cheese aisle on my way to buy a meal for one and a bottle of wine an obviously harassed woman with two girls uttered the phrase “will you both just be quiet for a minute, I can’t think!” We’ve all been there my friend, solidarity to you.
You can pick your friends but…..
You can’t pick your children’s friends, or their friends parents either. Now I have been very lucky and pretty much all of my children’s friends have brilliant parents, some of which we have become good friends with too. But one thing you don’t really think of is what happens when they have a friend you really don’t like or worst of all you can’t stand their parent but have to suffer play dates at their houses making small talk. I do realise it will only get worse when boyfriend and girlfriends enter the mix too……
So if you are about to enter parenthood or thinking about it, take heed my friends and if you’re already with me on this that’s what gin was invented for.
*Disclaimer* my kids are pretty ace…. most of the time….