Tuesday, December 17, 2013

I Said I Would Never...

{Pretty sure I've shared this quote before, but it really sums up the way I feel about ..everything.}

I've been thinking about this post for a while.  But things always got in the way and I never really had a chance to organize my thoughts on it.  And I still feel like I'm not saying this right.  But anyway...

When I was a teenager and my six-years-older cousin had a baby, I started thinking about what it would be like to one day have kids of my own and I began watching other parents and (I'll admit it) totally judging them.  A lot of my judgement came in the form of "When I'm a parent I'll never..." and whatever I saw other parents doing that I thought was wrong.  

But until you become a parent, you don't really know what you'll do.  You don't know how hard it is just to get through the day when someone is constantly tugging on you and needing you and sometimes being a complete brat.  You also don't know how much the love you have for them will actually make you ache -- like thinking of something bad happening to your child will make you physically sick. 

So here are a list of the top 10 things I said I would never do when I became a parent, but have totally done, or at least seriously considered...

I said I would never...

10. ...put one of those backpack leash things on my kid (I haven't actually gotten one of these but man, I've thought about it many times).


9. ...let my kids go out in public in dirty/stained clothes or with dirty faces/hands/clothes (...)

{An oldie but a goodie}

8. ...spank my child (sometimes it's the only thing that gets their attention.  It doesn't happen often -- in fact very rarely --  and it's a quick little swat, but I will admit that I've done it.  And it worked.).

7. ...own a minivan (I still don't...yet.  My 16 year old self would be shocked and horrified to hear me say the words "Man I want a Honda Odyssey so bad!")


6. ...let my kids eat junk food (it's not like we're the Honey Boo Boo family giving the kids Mountain Dew and Ding-Dongs, but occasionally Emily has a Cheeto or two, and she has fruit snacks at least once every day -- I've recently gotten her addicted to real fruit leather, so at least that's a step in the right direction).

5. ...take my kids to the "germ pit" (aka play area) at the mall (I used to walk by the one at our mall when I was a teenager and young adult and think "I'll never let my kids go in there -- look at all the gross runny-nose, grubby-handed kids in there! UGH!" But almost every time we go to the mall, we go to the germ pit.  As a parent, I have discovered the value of hand sanitizer)

4. ...make my younger child wear hand-me-downs (this comes from my childhood of wearing twice hand-me-downs -- as in my cousin wore them first, then my sister, then me -- and I told myself I would buy all new clothes for each kid... hahahaha apparently I thought I would marry rich or something... Almost everything Caroline has worn so far was Emily's, or her cousin Abigail's, or it came from a consignment shop or was given to me/her as a shower gift; AND lots of stuff Emily wears were Abby's or consignment finds too -- older children aren't even immune to hand-me-downs).

{Love this store}

3. ...let my kids take over my house (I could never understand why people just didn't put their kids stuff away or keep it all in one room and make their kids play in there -- then I had kids of my own and realized that it just wasn't practical.  We try to keep the number of toys strewn about to a minimum, and I usually do a before-bed sweep of the main floor and put stuff away, but if you just walk into my house on any given day, first of all you'll have trouble getting in because the Exersaucer is in front of the door and Emily's "anywhere chair" is right next to that, and then the baby swing is half in the walking path... but you'll also see a diaper bag on the kitchen table, a tiara on the coffee table, and a tea set on the couch).

2. ...have a dirty house (this kind of goes with the one above.  While we do practice picking up as we go, I don't actually remember the date of the last time I mopped my kitchen floor.  Is that bad?  Probably.  I can count the number of times I deep-cleaned my bathroom on one hand.  My house is neat & tidy, but it's not necessarily germ-free.  But you gotta eat a peck of dirt, I say...)


1. ...let my child scream/cry/have a complete shit fit in public (I judged some parents hard before I had children.  "Why can't they control their kids?"..."Why don't they just leave?" ... "Those kids are spoiled and they are horrible parents."  But you just DON'T realize before you have children of your own how unpredictable they can be.  Kid can be perfect a angel one second, and the next second, you're wondering who switched your baby with that kid from The Omen.  When you become a parent, you learn very quickly that you do whatever works.  If it means putting a Disney Junior show on your phone at a restaurant so that your kid stops blowing raspberries (aka spitting) on the head of the man in the next booth, then that's what you do.  Now, if a parent is completely ignoring their child while he/she is screaming at the top of their lungs, thinking that ignoring them is the quickest way to get attention -- no.  You do that at home.  I do that at home.  But in public, if your kid is screaming, you put your fork down, take them outside or to a quiet place, and you tell them what's up.)


Bonus: For some reason, I always wanted four kids.  And Jerry and I always talked about having a bunch of kids.  But when I got pregnant with Caroline, we realized that if we wanted our children to have all they needed and (most) everything they wanted, and, you know, go to college and stuff, then we probably needed to stop at two.  Putting two in daycare was hard enough -- college?!  When I was still pregnant I was kind of sad about this decision.  When Caroline came along, I realized how complete our family felt and can't really imagine having any more kids.  It's almost like I always knew these two little girls and now that they're here, everything is how it's supposed to be.  Not that I didn't feel whole with just Emily -- but I knew for many reasons that I didn't want an only child.  Two is our magic number :)

Basically, I realized that being a control freak wasn't really going to work out if I wanted to be a good mom.  And I realized that judging another parent when you don't really know their situation and circumstances is really ignorant.  Just because I do something a certain way doesn't mean it's going to work for someone else's kids.  Little by little, I'm understanding that parenthood is a collection of mistakes, small triumphs, and just... survival.  


So what are some things you said you'd never do and then totally ate your words when kids came along?  


  1. These were so funny. I think we all have our ideas of how we would handle a situation, but you never really know until you're in it. :D

    1. Exactly! And I know it's probably still going to happen as my girls get older. "I'll never shop at Justice" but you know they're going to want some peace sign rainbow colored something from that store... :)

  2. This post is so fabulous and every mama can relate!

    1. Glad you liked it! Thanks for stopping by Miranda! :)

  3. Such a great post. As a mother of 3 I can relate to every.single.point lmao!