I thought I was “well-prepared” for motherhood many years ago. But, I have to admit despite my many preparations, I was seriously lacking in some very basics about children.
For instance, did you know that children, say under the age of five, LOVE butter – and how butter spreads smoothly, deliciously, on arms and legs, and especially hair and furniture. Yes, it’s true.
They also love salt shakers, sugar bowls, toothpaste, and toilet plungers. These are things I didn’t realize. But my children have graciously been very willing to grow me in my shortcomings.
Just when I think I’ve finally figured them out, they teach me something new. Here’s a few other warnings I missed as I was reviewing the parenting qualifications checklist:
- Major blow-outs should be expected at any time, but especially when you are exhausted, when your little darling is in their best clothes – or you are. Or even on those precious occasion when they are splashing around in their bubble bath.
- Toys are not the best investment. Save your money and get them a cardboard box, wrapping paper, bubble packing material, kitchen utensils, or just put them outside. Everything outside is awesome and fun!
- Despite your best efforts at cleanliness or preventative medicine, germs will be openly and unashamedly shared.
- There will constantly be back wash in your cup, and bite marks in your food….and by the way, just get that “YOUR food” thought out of your head. Just remember that you have the best food, best hugs, best lap, best alone time, best book, etc, etc, etc. You are amazing!! Always! And there is nothing better than sharing what you call yours with you and making it “theirs!”
- Knives are children’s favorite go-to items. As are forks, tweezers, electrical outlets, scissors (but only the big, sharp kind), heating units, plastic bags, ladders, power tools, needles, toilet bowls, magnets, fires, marshmallow pokers, and generally anything labeled, “Keep Out of Children’s Reach”.
- Privacy is something for singles, and married’s without children. Closed doors are like a screaming invitation for child/parent fellowship time.
- Children can exist on fruit snacks alone. Some days you will be glad for this because they want nothing else you try to feed them.
- Children do say the darnedest things. Expect to be publicly humiliated often.
- If it’s clean, it will be dirty soon. Because you cleaned it. And for no other reason
This weekend, I want to acknowledge and say a very BIG thank you to my Mom, and Mother-In-Law, for all the years you were “taught” all the crazy things kids will do. Thank you for encouraging our curiosity, for pointing out the bugs and critters, for explaining and showing us how things grow, for exposing us to beauty and creativity, and for your prayers as we chased after dreams. Thank you for putting up with the dangerous stunts we pulled, the strange things we shared, and for allowing us to discover how not to do things. Thank you for doing our laundry, giving us haircuts, bandaging our boo-boo’s, washing our toothpaste off the mirror, hugging us tight, and reading us stories. Thank you for nurturing the wonder in our little hearts by letting us explore this world, dangers and all. You worked hard. You put in long nights. You scrubbed and you cleaned and cooked, and then did it all over again…and again. You showed us how to be brave, how to stand up for what’s right, how to stretch our wings and jump from the nest. Thank you for going the distance with us. We noticed. And you are worthy of praise.
Thank you, Moms, for being Mom. We love you!