As a college graduate, with more than one graduate degree, I used to think that I pretty much knew all that I really needed to know, or would know. Not that I wasn’t open to new information—as a professional scholar, that’s part of the job. However, I had no clue that I would learn the following, and that I would be initiated into it SO quickly! :-) I’m sure that you can all add to this list, and perhaps the fact that I didn’t know them shows how naive I am. Fair enough :-) It has been FUN (mostly) learning the following:
1. no matter what toys you buy for your child (educational, best reviews on Amazon or in magazines or wherever), they probably won’t like what the educators say they should. They will, instead, have more fun with the boxes and bags the toys come in, the paper they are wrapped in, or they will have the most fun with something you were going to throw away. Karina’s absolute favorite toys are (1) an empty ice cream tub and (2) the teething toy she refuses to chew on but loves to put into said empty ice cream tub. Tonight we added two wooden spoons that can be used to (A) beat on the empty ice cream tub and (B) chew on. She won’t chew on the teething toy but LOVES to chew on the wooden spoon. Hmmm…..
2. articles of clothing can complete disappear. Quickly. I took Karina to the history department a couple of weeks ago to meet with a former student (who wanted to appeal his grade from last semester) and to meet the secretaries and some fellow teachers. When I got her into the car in the parking garage, I noticed that one of her shoes was GONE. She has learned very quickly about velcro in the past 5 weeks. I looked all through the car, under the carseat, in the diaper bag, and have torn our house apart thinking perhaps it never actually made it to the car in the first place. No dice. My sister’s theory is that Karina cunningly constructed a catapult from assorted stuff in the diaper bag (a la MacGyver) and shot it out the window when I wasn’t looking, not being fond of black Mary Janes. I think it probably fell under the car in the parking garage, and is now one of those random lonely shoes that you see in odd places.
3. continuing on from #2, you start to lose parts of your mind. Case in point. Saturday I went shopping with my sister and bought a pink jacket to match a skirt that I have at home that nothing else matches and a new pair of running shoes (in the hopes that they will guilt me into exercising again). When I got home, I realized that (1) I had bought the wrong size shoes because I mistook the large B on the tag of my old shoes for an 8, and I really needed an 8 1/2 and (2) the skirt that I thought I had to match the jacket was not in my closet, and was a victim of my “it’s too big” closet purge this fall. Today, K and I went back to exchange the shoes and buy something to match the jacket (which matches nothing else in my closet). When I got home and went to hang up the new skirt, guess what I found? The original skirt! Perhaps the part of my brain that used to contain this stuff is now occupied by things like the words to “Abby’s Flying Fairy School” and “Murray had a Little Lamb”?
4. you look forward to the window of time in the middle of the day called “nap time.” Really. I love my daughter dearly, and I am so glad that she is here, but I get very little done when she is awake except to play with her. I realize that this is mostly my problem—playing with her is fun. I’m working on this process, but I have a huge pile of Thank You notes to write that just isn’t getting the attention it needs, plus the blog, etc. etc. etc.
5. diaper blow-outs happen most often when (1) you’re just ready to walk out the door and you’re already running late and/or (2) you just dressed your child in the “cutest” outfit ever in hopes of impressing people with how cute your child is.
6. you may think you’re ready, but you’re not. You’re not ready for how tired you are going to be, how much extra laundry there is to do, how disorganized and messy your house can get that fast, how you never get to eat unless you make time to do it (unless it’s stuff that’s bad for you, then you find a huge amount of time to eat that!) or how much you’re going to love them.
Anyone want to jump in here? I’m sure you can add to this list :-)