“No one tells you how hard it will be!”
That’s probably the advice I’ve heard the most from recent parents I’ve spoken to. Although, to me, that sounds like a pretty clear warning to prepare for something that’s going to be really, really hard. And I’m quite surprised that those people didn’t hear something similar when they were expecting their first child. What did they hear?
“It’s going to be tricky, but nothing really changes…”
“Having a child is just like looking after a cat…”
So to prepare for what could be the hardest challenge of our lives, here are a few things I am expecting for us that will likely change in the lead up to Nov:
- Approx. 4 hours of sleep a day. From what I’ve heard about the baby needing to feed and to keep waking up during the night, this sounds like a reasonable expectation. If we get any less than this than someone needs to tell us now!
- Approx. 20 hours of crying a day. I got to this number by simply subtracting the amount of hours we’ll be unconscious from the length of the day and expecting that those hours will be consistently full of tears (the baby’s or our own!). If we’ll be crying while we’re sleeping then someone needs to tell us now!
- Baby turds will get everywhere! On our clothes, in our hair, on the new white crib and, I’m sure at some point, we’ll inadvertently taste it. But if fire comes out of there then someone needs to tell us now!
- Not being able to go out! Although, fortunately, Jess and I are already an old, married couple so this will suit us just fine. If we are required to be more social when the baby comes then someone needs to tell us now!
- Jess and I will get on each other’s nerves! And we will likely not agree on a lot of things. But if we get through a hard week and the baby passes out and there’s a chance one of us will turn down the offer of a cold cider on our balcony then someone needs to tell us now!
2 thoughts on “Tom’s Take on: What to Expect”
Tom, I’ll give you a bit of my perspective. No single act involved in parenting is particularly hard, at least in our experience 19 months in. However the responsibility itself is all encompassing and there is finality in the change. Even if you get away for a night the kid is still there at home when you get back. Ultimately the buck stops at you two as parents. It’s a pretty awesome responsibility that took some time to settle in to. There is also a certain amount of “wear and tear” that happens with all of the parenting tasks that don’t stop. It all adds up over time. I think you two will both be great at it though.
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Love the blog Jess & Tom – keep it up – it gives me a good chuckle and jogs my memories of my pregnancy and all that comes after. I can’t wait to see what you write after Baby Girl Procter is born! My only ‘advice’ to you is to sleep when the baby sleeps – leave all the laundry, cleaning, etc. until later – putting on a pair of dirty socks never hurt anyone! And you WILL get ‘testy’ with each other – one or both of you may cry at any given time – bound to happen with the baby crying all the time, poop everywhere and being stuck at home all the time (just kiddin – it’s not that bad) so just show each other a little grace and all will be well. I’ll say it again – you two are going to make an awesome set of parents to your baby girl!
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