Top 11 Ironies of Parenting…(so far)
Every mom and dad can sing praises of the gifts parenthood affords us. But one of the most unsung gifts is the ability to appreciate irony in a whole new way. Sure, we each had a great sense of humor, sarcasm and wit before having children. We would share stories of Murphy’s Law and fervently discuss how ironic certain current events were. None of us knew then, however, how hard true irony would smack us in the face once our children came into our lives.
Sometimes funny, sometimes frustrating, always accompanied by a sigh and an eyeroll, these events are teaching us that nothing is absolute. And, because ten is so last phase ago, I give you eleven.
Top 11 Parenting Ironies
- Irony of Appetite: At every meal time, the same fight over getting the short person at the table to eat three bites takes at least a half an hour. The second you are in public or at an event without a scrap of food in your purse, however, there will be a low blood sugar meltdown complete with a whiny chorus of “But I’m HUUUUUUNNNNGRYYYYYY!!”
- Irony of Elocution: The short people finally learn to communicate and speak clearly around age three. Then they begin to use fake baby talk, which isn’t nearly as cute as the original.
- Irony of Early Risers: Despite a tall person’s tendency to sleep later if they were up later, the same is not true of the short people. For them, the later the bedtime, the earlier the wake up.
- Irony of Infant Sleep: In direct opposition to #3, infants are a different breed. Going against all common sense, for these tiny creatures, the “Sleep begets sleep” rumor is actually true. If they skip a nap, they won’t sleep well later. But the longer they nap during the day actually helps them sleep more at night. Very similar to the “Poop begets more poop” irony each time the tiny ones have a clean diaper.
- Irony of Earshot: The short people have phone radar. The quieter you need them to be, the louder they will get.
- Irony of Inclination: In other words, never believe that you have them figured out. The instant you learn all of their habits and preferences, they will change and hate everything they formerly loved and vice versa.
- Irony of Accoutrements: You lug around a diaper bag, change of clothes or any kind of gear that goes unneeded for weeks or months. The one time you run out without back-up is the time the child will have an accident or blow-out of apocalyptic proportions.
- Irony of Attachment: When still short, they are like leeches, sucking the life out of you, always attached to you, pulling on you, needing you. As soon as they reach the age of independence you so longed for, they will leave a void. Then the parent becomes the parasite, longing for its host.
- Irony of Adieu: The struggle over bedtime feels like the worst torture in the world. Then it sets in that your last words to the short people were angry ones before storming out. Now the short ones sleep soundly while you toss and turn over the guilt.
- Irony of Independence: You wished they would just learn to do things for themselves so you could finally get out the door faster. Then the “I do it mySELF” phase sets in and you will never be on time ever again.
- Irony of Urgency: When you do miraculously get all short people dressed and ready to walk out the door, one of them will need to go to the bathroom. This is especially likely if there are snowsuits, boots, and jackets on in winter, or wet bathing suits and beach gear precariously balanced for the walk back to the car in the summer.