Let's be real. This is me we're talking about. Give me the tiniest bit of wiggle room and something in my life is going to become fuel to make someone else giggle. I'm told my instructor was thoroughly amused.
And we're off...
Children are wonderful, aren’t they? They’re cute, funny, unpredictable, entertaining, and they can even be used as legal child labor at home, or as gophers when you just don’t feel like getting up to refill your glass during a television show. However, they’re also to blame for a pandemic running rampant across the nation. Children are, in my opinion, the reason adults all over the world are completely losing it. Don’t believe me? Let me explain.
Before children came along, I had my future planned out in intricate detail. I even had a schedule for when I would finish my schooling, when I would start my chosen career, when I would impress my bosses and get the big raise, when I would find Mr. Right and trick him into proposing to me, when we would buy our dream home, when we would hit the lottery and retire in luxury. You get the idea.
Now that I have children, there is no such thing as a schedule. What we have instead is a list of activities that are planned as a family and devolve into frantic races to complete school science projects that are “forgotten about” until the night before they are due. Our days can be set to the tune of “Flight of the Bumblebee” as alarm clocks go off at thoroughly indecent hours every morning and adults scramble to finish daily tasks before the children appear like miniature hurricanes and announce the need to attend dance classes, sports practices, scouting activities, church youth meetings, play dates, and the occasional school production. Knowing about such things more than fifteen minutes in advance is apparently forbidden in the “Children’s Handbook of Life”.
Before children came along, I was the proud owner of a substantial vocabulary that could be counted on to dazzle most of my friends as I articulated my thoughts in complete and precise sentences flowing with several syllable words guaranteed to make me sound like I held a doctorate in pretty much every field of study available.
Now that I have children, managing to form and spit out a complete sentence is worthy of a victory dance. My adult friends have running bets on how long I can go before announcing that I need to “go potty” or that something is “ucky”, which is now the technical term for something that is unpleasant to touch or smell. Stuttering is now its own dialect which can be clearly understood by other adults who also have smaller versions of themselves running around. The rate of the stutter and the volume of spittle escaping as we attempt to convey our thoughts is just the accent identifying the region in which we live.
Before children came along, I could remember phone numbers from every home my family ever lived in. I could recall the names of every person I’d ever called a friend, as well as their close relatives and pets. I could read books once and vividly remember each and every plot twist months later when quizzed about them. I could tell my parents every license plate they’d ever had registered to their vehicles throughout my childhood. I could even recite the American presidents in order through Ronald Reagan.
Now that I have children, I have to use a calculator to work out how old I am. I enter a room and stare around in confusion as I rack my brain to figure out why I went into that room in the first place. I have to cycle through the names of every child I’ve known, all of my siblings, and most family pets in the hopes of randomly shouting out the actual name of the child I’m attempting to discipline. Once I manage to get the name right, it’s a complete toss up that I remember what I was yelling about to begin with.
Before children came along, I was very aware of my physical appearance. My hair needed to be just right and “fly aways” were captured and tamed with brutal efficiency. My clothing choices were based on how well they flattered my eye color or accentuated curves without being flashy. My nails had to be kept just the right length, shape, and color to catch the eye while not clashing with that day’s clothing color. Shoe and clothing purchases were made often in order to keep up with current fads and the seasons.
Now that I have children, my hairbrush gets to wave at my scalp in passing each morning before my hair gets shoved unceremoniously into a ponytail holder that may or may not be set at a haphazard angle on my head. My outfits are thrown together purely on a “this was on the top of the pile” strategy that has so far miraculously avoided landing me on the “People of Walmart” website. Shoe and clothing purchases are now made based on how well they hide mystery stains that always manage to appear on the way to important functions. I wear an obnoxious amount of paisley and floral.
Yes, children are definitely cute, funny, unpredictable, and highly entertaining. But don’t let them fool you. Their real purpose is to fulfill the age old Mother’s Curse we all laughed off and foolishly ignored when we heard it: “May your kids be JUST LIKE YOU!” If we made our own parents completely nuts, it’s only logical that our children are going to have the same effect on us!
Just remember, whenever you see a mom holding that sweet child in her arms and rocking gently back and forth in an absent-minded way, that’s just Mother Nature preparing us for the days when we’re found curled up in the fetal position rocking and humming to ourselves in terror because our grown children just promised to come back home… with grandchildren.