Marriage and parenting are two of the most idealized life experiences. There are so many elements of growing up — and raising people to grown-ups — that we don’t consider. And when we do consider them it’s almost always with an air of “Oh, I’ll never do that. I’ll always do/be/have _____.”
And then we get there. And BOOM. Suddenly all of the “that” makes sense and you’re faced with the reconciling of having sworn off McDonald’s with your deep-seated desire for your kids to just please shut the holy heck up.
Deluded: I don’t need to tell you, those darn French fries are probably laced with methamphetamine (there are actually 19 ingredients in there. EW). They are bad for you, and because they are bad for you, and I care, I am never going to feed them to my blessed gifts from heaven.
Actual: On a road trip — shit, on a grocery store trip — those French fries are the only thing standing between me and silence. I will buy them. Super size me.
Deluded: I am never going to yell at my precious children because that is mean. And I am not going to be mean to my kids ever. Because my mother was mean to me, and I love them more than she ever loved me. And also I am a better person.
Actual: And then my 3-year-old slapped me. IN THE FACE. And all of the yelling. (Bonus points for varied use of swear language.)
Deluded: Television damages the developing brain. Because of this I will not allow my children under the age of 3 to watch any programming, and after age 3 only one-half hour per day.
Actual: If I do not get five minutes peace and quiet to drink my God blessed coffee, I’m not making it to naptime and you guys may not, either. Here’s the remote/iPad/iPhone. Just go. Please. Go
Deluded: Because I have not muddied their pristine minds with television (and I breastfed for three years) my children will be tiny prodigies — IQ minimum 140. They will know the alphabet — and numbers to 30 — by age 3; read chapter books by age 4.
Actual: Please stop eating your boogers.
Deluded: Organic. Non-GMO. Unprocessed. Grass -ed/antibiotic-free/free-range meats. Backyard chicken eggs.
Actual: Whatever the hell they will actually eat. Tyrants.*
Deluded: Children will be fully trained by age 2; two-and-a-half max.
Actual: Three-and-a-half year old child pooping like a dog in the backyard.
Deluded: My baby will look so precious in their tiny khakis and collared shirt with bow-tie. And don’t forget the itty bitty moccasins.
Actual: My baby will look so precious in whatever isn’t caked in mud/food/poop. And sometimes what is.
Because I said so
Deluded: I’m never going to say, “Because I said so.”
Actual: I’m pretty much always going to say, “Because I said so.”
*I have been know to turn on the TV and give the kids a cookie just to buy 15 minutes for some sex in the other room. No shame.
This post originally appeared on Ravishly.