24 things that have surprised me about motherhood: I never thought I would…

Posted by on Jan 16, 2012 in Parenting | 16 comments

Everyone says motherhood is full of surprises. They’re right. Here are 24 of mine.

I never thought I would…

1. Leak milk at the sight of a puppy.

2. Wipe up baby spew with clothing that I am wearing.

3. Consider 6 a.m. on a Sunday almost a sleep-in.

4. Refer to my spouse as “daddy” more frequently than I call him by name.

5. Still have my child sleeping right beside my bed 5 months after his birth.

6. Still want my child to sleep right beside my bed 5 months after his birth.

7. Catch poo with my bare hands.

8.Find myself physically incapable of letting the baby cry for longer than 57 seconds without comforting him.

9. Find myself physically incapable of concentrating on conversations, tasks or oncoming traffic when the baby is crying.

10. Understand why the manufacturers felt it necessary to print the following warning label on pacifier packaging: “Warning: Do not tie pacifier around a child’s neck as it presents a strangulation danger”.

11. End up with a red-headed baby who is below the 40th percentile for weight and height (I mean, we’ll keep him because he is the most adorable baby ever, but I seriously think he may have been switched at birth).

12. See regurgitated milk land in my (brown) hair and think, “it’s only a little bit, I don’t need wash it out today.”

13. Find myself speaking in a high-pitched musical tone even when I’m not talking to the baby.

14. Ricochet emotionally from extreme highs to extreme lows within half an hour.

15. Change four diapers in 20 minutes.

16. Feel guilty for leaving the baby with someone else for an hour so I can do some work.

17. Function adequately (most of the time) on this little sleep.

18. Say everything twice (“What’s the doggie doing, Dominic? What’s the doggie doing?).

19. Allow the dog to lap up milk that the baby has spewed up.

20. Call the dog over to lap up milk that the baby has spewed up.

21. Allow the baby to lap up milk that the baby has just spewed up. (Off my shoulder, people, not the floor. Hey, I work hard to make that milk, if he wants to drink it twice, that’s fine by me).

22. Feel the urge to sneeze and think first of my pelvic floor.

23. Think of household items such as bed sleepers and rocking chairs with the same acquisitive lust heretofore reserved for ice cream makers.

24. Feel so immediately, incandescently and uncontrollably joyful when the baby laughs.

What about you? What surprised you on becoming a parent?

If you enjoyed this post, stick around! Subscribe to my blog by RSS or by email (enter your email address top right) to receive updates about our adventures in parenthood and in Laos, and check out some of the following pregnancy and parenthood-related posts:

  1. Koi Maan Luuk: Or, I Am Pregnant
  2. Finding Out You Are Pregnant, In Slow Motion
  3. Life Lessons on Pregnancy and Breastfeeding from Cows
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  5. Ten Good Things About Boys: Attaining Synthetic Happiness One Gender Stereotype at a Time
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  1. That I would want to do it all over again!
    That a baby can spew threw the mouth and nose at the same time, yuck!

    • Yeah, not quite at the stage where I can list the first, and I haven’t yet seen the second. I look forward to both.

  2. You got almost single one of the things I would list. Definitely a list that sounds truly crazy until you are a parent, then you just read it and nod 🙂

  3. oh these are fantastic. This doesn’t apply to you overseas, but for me, I NEVER thought I’d be a mom who can’t handle leaving her kid at the nursery at church. When someone asked me if I’d leave him there I said yes, absolutely, and wondered why I wouldn’t? I certainly wasn’t worried about germs or safety.

    Now I HATE it. Hate it. Avoid it. Judah hates it, he cries the entire time, and therefore I literally am miserable and not concentrating the entire service. I swear my friends think I’m spoiling him because I’ll play with him behind the sanctuary instead of going in.

    • Kacie that’s so funny! And now I have a baby I totally get it. If I knew he was crying his eyes out in the nursery there’s no way I’d be taking in a thing – I have a hard enough time concentrating sometimes as it is!

  4. I was surprised by all the rules I’ve had to make. I mean come on who would have ever thought that you’d be telling your kids “no, you are not allowed to lick the car!” or “peeing into a garbage can in public is not something we do in this family”. Being a parent is at the very least never dull.

    • “no, you are not allowed to lick the car!” Awesome. I can’t wait for this stage.

  5. My favorite thing to tell me kids is “no, that does NOT belong in the toilet.”

    • Hahaha. Sigh. So much to look forward to.

  6. #21 just about made me spit out my banana!

    • Well, as Dominic has taught me, just because you’ve spit something out doesn’t mean you can’t still go on to enjoy it.

  7. I am surprised that it doesn’t change. When I saw my 30 year old daughter soon after she had given birth to her own daughter, I saw my child – exhausted, a bit frightened, trying so hard to be brave. I cleaned up her blood without blinking. I washed her, like I had so many years before. I am as proud of her today as when she took her first steps. You think that it will change over the years, but it doesn’t seem to…. that’s what has surprised me most.

    • Julie, that’s beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

  8. I don’t have kids and have no desire to for a very long time. But, this made me laugh at my desk. Thanks for brightening my day, C 🙂

    • You’re welcome. There’s a really fun one coming this week called “10 ways my baby is like my dog” – I’ve been saving it for launch week so it’s not all “book book book” 🙂


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