10 Things Only a Parent Could Appreciate...

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September 29, 2011

People often say that parents are high maintenance–we think the world revolves around our children. But I beg to differ. Since having a child, I’ve come to appreciate the small things in life. I don’t need a fancy handbag (although I’d gladly take one!) or trips around the world. Nope, just give me a lifetime supply of baby wipes and I’d probably kiss the ground you walk on.

Once you become a parent, everything you value and appreciate totally shifts. You celebrate successes you would have never even considered before. Like what? Take these 10 things you really have to be a parent to truly appreciate.

1. Nylon handbags. You won’t find them in any fashion magazine and not many stars carry them, but let me tell you they will change your life when you have a baby. They’re wipeable, which means if that breastmilk or sippy cup leaks, no stains! Bet your $5000 leather handbag can’t promise that.

2. Baby wipes. They’re truly a gift from heaven. Yes, they’re excellent for cleaning your baby’s bum, but they also clean hands, faces, tabletops. They remove eye makeup and catch boogers. The list goes on. Every parent should automatically get a lifetime supply of these things.

3. Poop. See, all you non-parents are probably thinking, “Ew, gross.” But if you’ve ever celebrated your baby’s first successful poop out of the hospital or your toddler’s first poop in the potty, you know what I’m talking about.

4. Going to bed at 9 p.m. On a Friday! I know, the clubs are just opening around that time. But as any parent knows, there’s really nothing better than putting your kids to bed early on a Friday because you know they are going to wake up at the crack of dawn and want to play like raving lunatics on Saturday.

5. A clean plate. While lots of women worry about cleaning their plate in front of a cute guy, most moms spend at least 3 hours every day hoping, praying that their kids will do just that. Even cleaning half of the plate is cause for celebration.

6. Actually, make that two clean plates. Because if your plate is clean, too, that means you didn’t spend the whole meal coaxing your kid to eat. You actually got to enjoy a full meal? Major!

7. A noisy restaurant. When it’s just two lovebirds, sure a nice quiet restaurant with candelight is romantic. But add kids to the picture and the noisier the better. Why? If the adults are already screaming and dancing to loud music, no one will mind–or even hear–when you child has a meltdown.

8. Dora the Explorer. If no one’s ever told you before, let me be the first to say it: Dora, I appreciate you. You’ve helped me potty train, encouraged my daughter to brush her teeth and yes, I’ll admit it, you’ve occasionally even served as a free babysitter. So thank you. Same goes for Elmo, the Yo Gabba Gabba crew and too many others to name here.

9. 20 questions. Although, it sometimes feels like 20,000 questions. Once a kid starts talking, it’s only a matter of time before the Whys start. And after the Whys, he/she moves on to full blown questions. And the questions come rapid fire style, in quick succession. If the interrogating kid is not your own, this exchange plain annoying. But if you’re said kid’s parent, it’s actually a moment that makes you proud. Because you realize, at that moment, that your child is way smarter than you ever imagined.

10. A wet kiss. In kissing etiquette, it’s not considered acceptable for one’s kiss to be too moist or involve lots of saliva. But that all goes out the window when we’re talking about the juicy lips of a toddler. Whether on the lips or the cheek or anywhere really, smooches–even the dripping wet ones–are what make it all worth it.

Did I miss anything? If so, share in the comments.

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