In my latest bid at shameless self-promotion, I decided to try and go straight to the top: Oprah. There was a recent ‘Be on the Show’ topic that asked for you to create a video of your ‘mom moments’. I can do this – I thought – boy, do I have plenty of fodder! And while I’m not really all that keen on the idea of seeing myself on television, I would like an hour with those hair and make-up people she employs.
Among others, one of the questions asked was what was something you wished you knew before having children?
So here is my Top Ten List, an Ode to Dave Letterman and of course, you too Oprah.
10 Things I Wish I Knew Before Having Children, or Things I Now Know For Sure, in no particular order:
10. The hours from 5-7pm are the equivalent of six normal daytime hours; conversely, the hours from their bedtime to yours are the equivalent of 15 minutes, during which time you have to email, read your book, have sex, and watch everything you’ve tivo-ed
9. If you can look in on them at night while they're sleeping and not still want to kill them, you're doing okay
8. Unless you move to a deserted tropical island where fig leaves or total nakedness is acceptable, you will never be caught up on your laundry again. Ever. (Except maybe with a full-time nanny, and then, only maybe.)
7. As soon as you pick up a telephone, your children (who have spent all day ignoring you) will begin fashioning crude weaponry out of things from the utensils drawer, helping themselves to ice cream, chips or other ‘sometimes’ food and /or simultaneously start demanding your undivided attention with that puzzle or craft they haven’t looked at in weeks
6. The contents of your vacuum cleaner bag will be thus: 90% dust, dirt and fluff; 10% cheerios, Barbie shoes and legos
5. You will have to renegotiate every major relationship in your life, no matter how stable: with your husband, your boss, your mother, your friends
4. Going to the bathroom for any reason (from peeing to tamponing to showering) will become a 'teachable moment'
3. Your outdoor voice becomes your indoor voice for large portions of the day
2. Expect your favourite clothes to become napkins, tissues, and on the odd occassion, even toilet paper - a sponge for any and all bodily fluids. (I'm still waiting for a fashionable clothing range from Bounty)
1. If you do it right, it's the hardest job ever; if you don't do it right, it's even harder
And, as every mum knows, everything tastes better with ketchup.