Hands up if you find parenting a total breeze. Anyone? Didn’t think so.
It’s tough, though admittedly some days are tougher than others. We all get those mythical unicorn days sometimes where everything goes well, the crying is it a total minimum and everything just goes right.
The day after you can guarantee a return to our regularly scheduled programming, where you end up covered in vomit, scraping god knows what off of the walls and nearly having a heart attack when someone learns how to climb out of the window.
For these reasons there are a few essential tips you need to know in order to survive these trying early years:
1. Never leave Lego on the floor of a dark room
Of all the rules, this is the one you need to remember. You thought childbirth hurt? Wait until you step on part of that Lego zoo you thought was so great when you bought it.
2. Never believe what your kid tells you
Why would your toddler lie to you? Biscuits. That’s why. They will do anything for treats, because they are like infant crack.
3. When it’s a choice between sleep and anything else, choose sleep
Stop running round doing the laundry and put the vacuum cleaner away. You never know when a nap might abruptly end, so take advantage of it while it’s happening.
4. Stop buying nice new stuff
You’ll save money, and your kids are going to completely wreck it anyway.
5. Lying is totally acceptable
Want to eat your dinner all to yourself? Explain that it’s spicy/alcoholic/full of bugs.
6. Always buy two of everything
When you have two children doing this is the difference between being able to leave the house for a pleasant day out and spending the entire day watching your toddler beat the floor with their fists.
7. Allowing your child to binge is totally acceptable
On Netflix that is. If you’re ill, had a rough night or feeling totally overwhelmed, stick some kid-friendly entertainment on the TV and curl up on the sofa. This isn’t negligent parenting, it’s survival.
8. Make visitors useful
If you’ve just had a baby and are being inundated with offers of help, take them. Every single one.
9. Use your kids to your advantage
Got a social event coming up that you can’t stand the thought of attending? Cancel and blame the kids. They have to make themselves useful somehow.
10. Never leave a baby boy penis uncovered
Girls can fire wee at quite an impressive distance too.
11. Do not trust your child
When your toddler tells you that they do not need the loo just before getting in the car, always always always stick them on the toilet seat.
12. Always look in the mirror before leaving the house
No matter how late you are, always check your reflection. Is there pen on your face? Is there food on your top? Is your skirt tucked into your pants? These are all things that can happen when you’re sleep deprived and harassed.
13. Quit while you’re ahead
If you managed to keep yourself and your child alive and fed today then consider yourself a huge success.
14. Be wary of bare-bottomed children
Babies look cute without a nappy on. Picture all those adorable newborn baby pictures of parents cradling their sleep newborns.
The reality of these pictures is that the baby probably pooped, did a wee or both all over their arms and clothing of their unsuspecting parents.
The lesson? Never let a kid go bare-bottomed unless you’re prepared to accept the inevitable consequences.
After a long and stressful day, this is your reward.
Follow these tips and you should get through the early years relatively unscathed. Do you have any to add?