There are a few things you learn about kids when it’s too late to change your mind:
Kids love to go new places and explore new things, except to the doctor, the dentist, the clothing store, the butcher and school. Anything else, they’re up for it.
You’ll soon learn that “I’m hungry!” means “I want cookies and ice cream and candy and…”
Your little darling never spills anything on her clothes. At least she doesn’t until she’s ready for church in her new Easter dress and it’s three minutes until time to leave. Then, she just has to have a last sip of her chocolate milk. Whoops.
One thing about it: Being a parent is seldom boring. Kids have energy, they’re curious, and, if we allow ourselves, we can completely enjoy them.
Right? I mean, so what if the cereal went all over the floor. That’s what dogs are for, isn’t it? And you have 15 minutes to come up with a snack for the entire class? Not a problem; you’re creative!
Once you have kids, there’s no going back, and something even compels us to have more than one, or two, or even three! There seems to be a sort of amnesia that clouds your mind when someone tries to remind you how hard the terrible twos were or how stressful that first day of preschool was and you merrily sign up for the next baby without thinking too much about those things.
We are born to be parents and parents have been parents for eons. Kids have been kids for just as long but they always seem to have a little edge over their parents. We never quite figure it out, even when we’re cooing over that “so, so sweet!” baby or smiling proudly at that handsome young man all dressed up for the prom. We just know we’re hard wired to have kids and to take care of them until they can take care of themselves. (As if that ever happens.)
Sure, experts have the answers. They know why you’re proud or why you had another baby, or why you insist on dressing them up like dolls when you know they will act like monkeys. They can tell you when to start solid food and when to potty train and that you’re supposed to make them clean their own rooms.
But does it really matter? When you see the man in the moon and it makes you feel romantic, does it matter that it’s only craters and reflected light? Of course not. So it is with having and raising kids. Some things don’t really matter in the long run. We learn what we must when we must, but having kids is about exploring life, not about rules and making sure everything is proper.