Surviving extreme sleep deprivation, scavenging the leftovers of your kids because you haven’t eaten yet, and multi-tasking are pretty cliché and well known skills of parents. Let’s dig into the random amazing skills you acquire as a parent that are less well known. If you’re already a parent, then you know all of these, so be prepared to nod and possibly laugh along. If you aren’t a parent, now you can know what mad skills you have to look forward to mastering.
#1: Rapid personal hygiene time
Did you know you can shower, brush your teeth and hair in 5 minutes while keeping little people entertained? Yeah me neither, until I had kids. Oh yeah, fair warning to non-parents out there, forget about the ‘personal’ part in hygiene time. While your kids are little, you will always have an audience. Even if you close or lock the door, they will be there. Waiting. Perhaps even screaming as if they are dying. If you have more than one child, it becomes even more exciting. This is why I usually shower at night. This is also why I don’t shower often.
#2: The look
You know what look I’m talking about, even if you’re not a parent. It’s that look a child receives from their parent when they are acting out in public. That look that says, “You better shape up right now or you WILL regret it!” Basically you become a master of this look once you are a parent. It only takes a couple times of your child receiving ‘the look’ before they realize not to mess with said look.
#3: Doing things one handed
This is something that is learned pretty quick once you have a baby. Sure, there is the ErgoBaby and other great baby carriers you can use (shameless plug for my favorite: Ergobaby 360 All Carry Positions Award-Winning Ergonomic Baby Carrier, Grey). However, there will be times that you end up stranded (like when your baby doesn’t want to be in it) and only have one hand available for use while you hold your baby. You will find you are able to do laundry (including folding), washes dishes, cook dinner, and a mirage of other chores and tasks one handed. The most challenging is buttoning and putting your pants back on one handed while holding a baby after you have gone to the bathroom. TMI, I know, BUT it is the ULTIMATE test that determines whether you are a true master of this skill.
#4: The uses you find for baby wipes
Did you know you can bathe a human entirely with baby wipes? You haven’t truly parented until your child has a blow out poopy diaper and is literally covered in poo all the way to their neck (yes, this really does happen!) and you are miles from a bathtub. Your only viable option: baby wipes! Plus, since you always have baby wipes around, you find yourself cleaning the house and yourself with them too. Don’t laugh, I’m dead serious, they really ARE amazing!
#5: The rocking motion
If you start doing a rocking motion when you see others rocking a baby, even if you don’t have one in your arms, congrats! You are most likely a parent! I’m not entirely sure why this happens, but I think it is because once you’ve had a baby and you’ve had to rock them in your arms over 100 times, the muscle memory just kicks in when you see someone else do it? It’s kind of disconcerting the first few times it happens, but after awhile you just roll with it…or rock with it rather.
#6: Pack mule
If you thought you were a pack mule before you had kids because you could carry in all the grocery bags into the house in one trip, then you will be in for a bit of a rude awakening. As a parent, you now get to do that, plus carry one or 2 small humans, plus a diaper bag, plus other random crap that is seemingly important to the lives of your kids but quickly loses its importance after several hours of hauling it around. I shouldn’t complain, my arms stay in shape thanks to all this. Oh yeah, and if you try to go anywhere for a couple of days with your little people tribe, count on bringing most of their belongings. So basically just rent a u-haul truck anytime you try to go anywhere.
#7: The 2nd wind you get when your kids FINALLY go to bed for the night
It might only last a few minutes before you pass out yourself, but hey, at least you tried. You tried to be more than a parent, despite your exhaustion. It’s the thought that counts, right? Or, if you DO succeed in staying awake after they go to bed, you might be so excited that you stay up too late trying to cram 24 hours of activities into 2-3 hours and then you are super tired in the morning when your human alarm clocks wake you up. Too bad kids don’t have a snooze option.
#8: The ability to have more unconditional love for a person than you thought was possible
I figured I would end on a positive note because honestly, I can’t imagine life without my little people. My kids are truly my greatest blessings. Kids have such joy and exuberance for life you can’t help but get caught up in that joy and exuberance yourself. Yes, they are a lot of work, but because of them I have all these mad skills I didn’t know I was capable of ever having. Simply watching them grow and learn is incredible! Plus, their hugs, kisses, smiles, and laughter make-up for the craziness of parenting. Most of the time anyways, if I’m to be completely real and honest. Seriously, I don’t think I quite realized what true and unconditional love was until I became a parent. I’m sure you other parent people out there can relate. Who knew a little drooling baby that starts out completely dependent on you for their survival can so quickly wrap their cute little finger around your heart?
Who knew us parent people had so many mad skills? Now if only we could acquire some skills that make laundry and dishes easy to keep up with.
Did I forget to add something to this list? Which item on the list did you find most relatable? Did any of the items make you laugh out loud? Let me know in the comments below.