Steps to Raising Your Child and Surviving: A Mother's... Realistic Guide.
1. Resist punching people who randomly touch your belly, tell birth horror stories, tell you how BIG you are, or ask, "Are you still pregnant?" Remember, stress isn't good for you or your baby. Snarky comebacks are totally appropriate. "Actually, no. I'm not still pregnant. I had her 3 months ago and forgot to tell everyone.... Oh no! Where is she?!"
2. While pregnant, give your baby a fun name. This may help you bond. Some suggestions are: Bean, Peanut, or Jellybean. Though you may feel like you are growing one, Cow and Elephant are generally not as acceptable.
3. While in the delivery room, only allow one or two people in. Your husband should probably be one of them.
4. Coach your husband a bit first. Inform him that telling you when you're having a large contraction is not necessary, whether or not you can feel it, and doing so may be grounds for a five-minute time out.
5. Resist the urge to strangle your husband during labor. He would probably like to see the birth as well. Make sure you tell him that you cannot be held accountable for anything you say during labor. Blame the pain or the pain meds.
6. After the baby is born, allow some time for just the two of you. Cherish these moments.
7. Send Dad out to buy massive amounts of chocolate. Tell him it will save your sanity. And his.
8. After getting home, at first, do not allow many visitors. You don't want your son to get sick.
9. Your mother and mother-in-law may insist on visiting even if they are sick. If they come while they are sick, tell them they can only hold the baby if they wear full-body biohazard suits. When he cries at the approaching "aliens" tell them that he must be tired, and they'd better come back another day.
10. Learn to ignore unwanted advice from people who have never been parents.
11. Learn to ignore unwanted advice from people who have been parents. Just because it worked for them doesn't mean it will work for you.
12. That little smile? It's more than just gas. Enjoy it.
13. Prepare any pets for when your son becomes mobile. Run the vacuum constantly to mimic the volume of a screaming child. Pull its tail (LIGHTLY!) on occasion.
14. Do not fret if your son doesn't walk the same day the neighbor's baby walks, even if they were born on the same day. This holds true for all milestones.
15. Try not to gloat if your son walks before the neighbor's baby, even if your baby was born after theirs.
16. Enjoy each and every stage.
17. Time will fly. Soon, it will be your son's first day of Kindergarten. Resist the urge to ride the bus with him and make the teacher pry you off of him.
18. Study calculus, physics, and Shakespearian literature. You will be helping your son with homework on these subjects. In third grade.
19. Time will fly. One day, your son may go away to college. Resist sleeping in the dorm with him.
20. Time will fly. Your child may get married. Crying at the wedding is perfectly acceptable. Going with them on their honeymoon is not.
21. Soon, you may become a grandparent. Rejoice. Revel in the reward of raising your child and surviving.
22. Remember that no matter how old, your child is always a gift from God. God knit him together and knows all of his days. Enjoy rising your son to be a Godly man. He is fearfully and wonderfully made! And remember, when you're at your wits' end, God is there for you too.
****DISCLAIMER**** The author of this story falls under the advice of step 10, and has never been a parent. The author is not to be held responsible for any ramifications from strict adherence to these steps. This is fictional... or is it?
Psalm 139:13-16(NASB), paraphrase
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