Or whatever--you know how I am with math.
Okay--first of all? I don't know how I wrote without blogging before--you guys are so supportive, it really keeps me going!
Second, I was going to spend this blog obsessing about appropriate ways to deal with my 5th period class, since they are unmitigated monsters and should all be tied down and epi-ladied until they scream for mercy and bleed out of their follicles, just like all of us did in the 80's. (Remember epi-lady? That vibrating coil of springs that was supposed to grab the hair on your legs and RIP IT OUT AT THE ROOTS? Yeah--I hate them.) However, I remembered that I get to go to a baby shower tomorrow, and that we're supposed to bring in advice or poetry or something, so I thought I'd concentrate on advice I'd give to a new parent.
Here it is, in no particular order, free, ignorable advice from a person who hasn't cleaned her bathroom in a week, and, hey, feels pretty good about that.
1. Kiss the following things goodbye: a clean car, peace of mind, finished laundry, potpourri, dust-bunny control, complete thought, grown-up interaction, a non-wash&wear wardrobe, germophobia, reading time, a social life, and loneliness--even in the bathroom.
2. Say hello to the following things: constant guilt, the fierce protectiveness of a mama bear mated with a tasmanian devil on mind-control drugs, and the ability to watch, listen to, and enjoy little kids programming that you thought you'd never possess.
3. About #2--Don't give up your own music in the car. The surest way to get separated from your child is to be hauled off to the loony bin singing Disney showtunes and laughing maniacally while you peruse the laundry detergent section of the grocery store.
4. About #3--But never underestimate the true cultural value of Disney showtunes, the Muppets, and Sesame Street. Even the Wiggles aren't as bad as you first thought.
5. Remember those moments in the car, when you haul ass, cut off other cars and flip off little old ladies so you can get home and pee? Yeah. YOu won't be able to do that anymore--any of it. Including being able to pee when you first run through the door.
6. All babies want to do is communicate. All adolescents want to do is communicate. Make listening your # 1 art form.
7. That being said, make "ignoring the whiny small shit" your # 2 art form.
8. Take a mental snapshot of your child when she is being her most precious and adorable. Impress it in your brain so that even when you're old and senile, you will remember that one moment. This way, you can call up that mental image when you hit your head on the kitchen wall after tripping over your child's shoes--it won't stop you from wanting to kill her, but it will keep you from imagining doing it with pain.
9. Think of the one thing you most dislike about yourself. Look it dead in the eye and say, "I love you even if you possess that quality." Be prepared to do this every day--that's the one character trait your child will pick up first.
10. Think of the one thing you most love about yourself and the people around you. Examine this quality carefully--revel in it. Be proud of it. These are the parts about your child that will allow you to bear with and forgive #9.
11. Don't feel bad about teaching your child sarcasm at a young age. It teaches them irony, which is very useful in highschool, when little boys are expected to enjoy Pride and Prejudice and little girls are expected to love MacBeth.
12. Dance and sing around your child. Especially as she grows older and this behavior embarrasses the hell out of her. Trust me--its a good example.
13. Adolescence is going to suck. Plan a long trip when you leave your changeling with grandma and grandpa who will be happy to commiserate with all of your shortcomings.
14. Laugh. Long, loud, and with a full heart--especially when you feel like laughing least.
15. Sylvia Plath said that motherhood is "getting on the train there's no getting off." She was a wise woman and a very good poet, but if you dwell too long on that thought, you will end up exactly where she did. Some other author (God forgive me,I don't remember who...) said that children were the preface to a 24 volume suicide note. This guy is not quite as famous, but he's a hell of a lot smarter. Parenthood is terrifying and ridiculous at once. Think, pray, and remember # 14.
And that's about all I've got. Or, that's about all I've got before the kids start eating each other and hit the place where they won't forgive me ever for snapping their heads off while I spare the random neuron to write this...peace out:-)