Monday, May 9, 2016

Things I Thought I Would Never Do BC, Before Children

atheist parent

I'm sure lots of parents who blog write a blog post just like this one. The blog post where we poke fun at our BC certain selves, Before Children Selves, back when we were so sure we knew so much about the simple task of raising decent children. I mean, jeeeeeeesh, it's so obvious...I certainly knew more then than I do now! 

I haven't seen one of these blog posts in awhile, but I know they are out there. With the long line of other bloggers who are willing to reveal their laughable proclamations, I join in with my own absurd certainties...BC:

My kids will sleep in their beds:  LOL, just hilarious. 
When the kids were small, their adorable bedtime screeches pretty much ensured that they would be sleeping with Jerry and I for life if we ever wanted to get any sleep at night. When the kids were quite small they were far more likely to be found sleeping sweetly in their own beds in their own rooms but when Elizabeth was about age five she appropriated our bed as her own and John followed her.

She had such interesting ideas about where she wanted to sleep and I was/am a YES kind of mother. So the kids have been known to sleep in the closet, in the bathtub, in the basement, in the kitchen, on the trampoline, in the hallway, on the stairs, under the table, and many times on our bedroom floor. As the sleeping darlings claimed larger and larger portions of our large mattress we finally make the proclamation that they could sleep in our room on the floor but not in the bed.

They slept there for several weeks, uncomfortably. Then into the hallway for another couple of weeks by choice, then into their own beds, where they now comfortably sleep nightly. Go ahead judge me.

My kids will eat what I cook. OH, don't make me laugh.
I want to, oh I want to insist on cooking one entree and tons of veggies on the side that everyone eats. But little things like calcium, protein, and iron have made me beg, grovel, and play the diner cook many an evening meal. I allowed Elizabeth to go to bed hungry several dozen times and that little tactic never ever encouraged her to eat what I provided for dinner.

My kids will not throw temper tantrums in public. Uh huh.
Sudden, explosive, unpredictable, unavoidable, dramatic, tenacious, committed, impressive. 
Enough said.

I will look decent when I go out into public. *snort*
How many times did I go out into the stores, the library, the pharmacy, the department store, the doctor, etc, then walk back into the house and look into the mirror with mortification. What is on my shirt? Where is the hair brush? When is the last time I had a hair cut? Why do I have only one eyebrow? Is that safety pin still holding my glasses together?

I will never park my kids in front of the television. Yeah, right.
When the alternative is to never poop, shower, do laundry, get anything clean, you learn to give a little on this score. I worshiped Steve from Blues Clues for his ability to hold the attention of my kids long enough for me to have small stretches of sanity back in the day. Blues Clues, Clifford the Big Red Dog, that ridiculous purple dinosaur, and the Wiggles, HORRIBLE! Yeah, as you can see this list is long overdue because my stuff is pretty old. 

I will have a life outside of being a parent. Sure.
I insisted on this one when I would watch my friends completely disappear after having children, and when I would visit them, I could see that their pathetic lives were swamped in Legos, Polly Pockets, stuffed animals, toy cars, freakishly colorful plastic crap, drippy bathtubs, and sippy cups. And what was that smell? I must have been insufferable!

How could I have known that life outside of parenthood was so pointless...and life made sense in the chaos.

My kids would not eat fast food. BA HA!
Sometimes driving through a windowed place was the only thing that kept us all sane during long hours in the car, before or after play dates, and anytime I was feeling the slightest big hangry. Besides, who doesn't love the boxes of free toys from the lunch meals?

I will not let my body go to pot. Sigh.

I will not let my child look and dress like a little orphan child. Again, sigh.
Look, I felt lucky if the kids would agree to wear anything on some days. Elizabeth has always had a very strong aversion to pleasing me so if I had any plans for a nice outfit for her, I could forget it. She had her own ideas, her own style, and her own plans for wardrobe. Sometimes I had to accept the tulle, sparkly skirt and the Clifford t-shirt with snow boots and stripped leggings.

And I will not push strollers into the street. Huh?
Seems like an odd one, but I thought that pushing the stroller into the street was like putting the cart before the horse, kind of dangerous and putting the kid in danger. What I couldn't have known was the no one is more aware of traffic on the road that a mother hen pushing a stroller with a full basket underneath and a sleep blanket over the sun block thingy.

I know that if I went back in time and told myself of the realities to come I would pat my future self on the back, agree to rethink my own advice, and give my knowing future self the Oh Poor, Deranged You look I used to give to all parents...back in the day.

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