Tuesday, January 25, 2011

15 Step Program

I came across this "program" the other day and couldn't stop laughing in how true so much of it is!

This is a great test for all of those want to be parents in a very humorous way.

I don't fully adhere to lesson number 7 as I have vowed to never own a mini-van and am still holding strong...but discustingly dirty INSIDE AND OUT, it is!

This is kind of one of those lists that you wish was around when you were contemplating  child-bearing. But I do say that there are some essentials that have been left out. First read the published 15 step program, then I will fill you in on my additions...and my list seems to be growing, daily...no, by the minute!

The program is posted all over the internet and I am unsure who wrote the original, it may be "Mama Hippo."

Lesson 1

1. Go to the grocery store.
2. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office.
3. Go home.
4. Pick up the paper.
5. Read it for the last time.

Lesson 2

Before you finally go ahead and have children, find a couple who already are parents and berate them about their…

1. Methods of discipline.
2. Lack of patience.
3. Appallingly low tolerance levels.
4. Allowing their children to run wild.
5. Suggest ways in which they might improve their child’s breastfeeding, sleep habits, toilet training, table manners, and overall behavior. Enjoy it because it will be the last time in your life you will have all the answers.

Lesson 3

A really good way to discover how the nights might feel….

1. Get home from work and immediately begin walking around the living room from 5PM to 10PM carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 8-12 pounds, with a radio turned to static (or some other obnoxious sound) playing loudly. (Eat cold food with one hand for dinner)

2. At 10PM, put the bag gently down, set the alarm for midnight, and go to sleep.

3. Get up at 12 and walk around the living room again, with the bag, until 1AM.

4. Set the alarm for 3AM.

5. As you can’t get back to sleep, get up at 2AM and make a drink and watch an infomercial.

6. Go to bed at 2:45AM.

7. Get up at 3AM when the alarm goes off.

8. Sing songs quietly in the dark until 4AM.

9. Get up. Make breakfast. Get ready for work and go to work (work hard and be productive)

Repeat steps 1-9 each night. Keep this up for 3-5 years. Look cheerful and together.

Lesson 4
Can you stand the mess children make? To find out..

1. Smear peanut butter onto the sofa and jam onto the curtains.
2. Hide a piece of raw chicken behind the stereo and leave it there all summer.
3. Stick your fingers in the flower bed.
4. Then rub them on the clean walls.
5. Take your favorite book, photo album, etc. Wreck it.
6. Spill milk on your new pillows. Cover the stains with crayons. How does that look?

Lesson 5
Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems.
1. Buy an octopus and a small bag made out of loose mesh.
2. Attempt to put the octopus into the bag so that none of the arms hang out.

Time allowed for this – all morning.

Lesson 6

1. Take an egg carton. Using a pair of scissors and a jar of paint, turn it into an alligator.
2. Now take the tube from a roll of toilet paper. Using only Scotch tape and a piece of aluminum foil, turn it into an attractive Christmas candle.
3. Last, take a milk carton, a ping-pong ball, and an empty packet of Cocoa Puffs. Make an exact replica of the Eiffel Tower

Lesson 7
Forget the BMW and buy a mini-van. And don’t think that you can leave it out in the driveway spotless and shining. Family cars don’t look like that.

1. Buy a chocolate ice cream cone and put it in the glove compartment. Leave it there.
2. Get a dime. Stick it in the CD player.
3. Take a family size package of chocolate cookies. Mash them into the back seat. Sprinkle Cheerios all over the floor, then smash them with your foot.
4. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car.

Lesson 8

1. Get ready to go out.
2. Sit on the floor of your bathroom reading picture books for half an hour.
3. Go out the front door.
4. Come in again.Go out.
5. Come back in.
6. Go out again.
7. Walk down the front path.
8. Walk back up it.
9. Walk down it again.
10.Walk very slowly down the sidewalk for five minutes.
11. Stop, inspect minutely, and ask at least 6 questions about every cigarette butt, piece of used chewing gum, dirty tissue, and dead insect along the way.
12. Retrace your steps.
13. Scream that you have had as much as you can stand until the neighbors come out and stare at you.
14. Give up and go back into the house.
You are now just about ready to try taking a small child for a walk.

Lesson 9

Repeat everything you have learned at least (if not more than) five times.

Lesson 10

Go to the local grocery store. Take with you the closest thing you can find to a pre-school child. (A full-grown goat is also excellent). If you intend to have more than one child, then definitely take more than one goat. Buy your week’s groceries without letting the goats out of your sight. Pay for everything the goat eats or destroys. Until you can easily accomplish this, do not even contemplate having children.

Lesson 11

1. Hollow out a melon.
2. Make a small hole in the side.
3. Suspend it from the ceiling and swing it from side to side.
4. Now get a bowl of soggy Cheerios and attempt to spoon them into the swaying melon by pretending to be an airplane.
5. Continue until half the Cheerios are gone.
6. Tip half into your lap. The other half, just throw up in the air.

You are now ready to feed a nine month old baby.

Lesson 12

Learn the names of every character from Sesame Street , Barney, Disney, the Teletubbies, and Pokemon. Watch nothing else on TV but PBS, the Disney channel or Noggin for at least five years. (I know, you’re thinking What’s “Noggin”?) Exactly the point.

Lesson 13

Move to the tropics. Find or make a compost pile. Dig down about halfway and stick your nose in it. Do this 3-5 times a day for at least two years.

Lesson 14
Make a recording of Fran Drescher saying “mommy” repeatedly. (Important: no more than a four second delay between each “mommy”; occasional crescendo to the level of a supersonic jet is required). Play this tape in your car everywhere you go for the next four years. You are now ready to take a long trip with a toddler.

Lesson 15
Start talking to an adult of your choice. Have someone else continually tug on your skirt hem, shirt sleeve, or elbow while playing the “mommy” tape made from Lesson 14 above. You are now ready to have a conversation with an adult while there is a child in the room.

Now, this post is probably not as laugh-out-loud funny to those that don't yet have children. This is over the top funny for those who do because we realize that there is significance in it all, and we have all experienced a variation of every number on the program in some form or another!

My additions based on personal experience:

Lesson 16

Never answer a phone call or attempt to phone anyone until it is after 730pm, before 7am or while in the car from your hands-free device while you are on your own. To talk above the screaming or fight with an infant over whom is holding the phone will only piss off the person on the other line.

Lesson 17

Know that any sense of SELF will be lost for at least the first 4-6 months of the child's life.  You are their food source (be it bottle or breast, they can't hold the bottle!), their support (to sit, to move, to roll, to see the world), you are their comfort. So much of this can be the most amazing feeling in the world, and at the same time, it can be the loneliest feeling. You are the WORLD to someone who can't tell you how much they appreciate what you are doing...and with those long days and nights and little to know sleep, you would kill for any form of a life of your own...honestly even a 10 minute coffee break, or better yet, NAP!

Lesson 18

Well, you're gone from your life, so what makes you think your relationship with your spouse or partner will remain the same!?

Children are amazing. They bring so much into a parents life...and being a parent, you embrace the good and the bad, the ups and the downs. Sometimes, it just helps to know what to look for to try to manage it all a little bit better =)

And if this list is a deterrent to anyone thinking of children...honestly, why would we keep going back for more if it was all so bad! I would not be the person I am today, the mom I am, the wife I am, the women I am, without having these two amazing kids of ours in my life.  They bring the love, the laughter, the strength and courage, the butterflies, the tears of joy and the smiles to my life. My life would not be complete without Kai and Si.


 

One last tip, said in the words of Rita Rudner: "My husband and I have decided to start a family while my parents are still young enough to look after them."   Thank you all so much! We are so fortunate to have our family around for support, love and help. We appreciate it and we know the kids do to!

Here are a few more quotes:

Making the decision to have a child is momentous.  It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.  ~Elizabeth Stone

It's not only children who grow.  Parents do too.  As much as we watch to see what our children do with their lives, they are watching us to see what we do with ours.  I can't tell my children to reach for the sun.  All I can do is reach for it, myself.  ~Joyce Maynard

The one thing children wear out faster than shoes is parents.  ~John J. Plump

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