So you want to be a parent?

We hope you enjoy this (obtained from the Internet) even though the warning comes too late!

Preparation for parenthood is not just a matter of reading books and decorating a nursery. Here are some simple exercises that expectant parents can do to prepare themselves for the real-life experiences of being a mother or father.

  1. Women: to prepare for maternity, put on a dressing gown and stick a large beanbag down the front. Leave it there for 9 months. After the 9 months have passed, remove 25% of the beans. Men: to prepare for fatherhood, go to your local drugstore, empty the contents of your wallet on the counter and tell the pharmacist to help himself. Then go to the supermarket and make arrangements to have your salary paid directly to their home office. Finally, go home, pick up the paper, relax and read it for the last time.
  2. Before you finally go ahead and have children of your own, find a couple who are already parents. Berate them about their methods of discipline, lack of patience, appalling low tolerance levels and how they have allowed their children to run amok. Suggest ways in which they might improve their child’s sleeping habits, toilet training, table manners and overall behaviour. Enjoy it. It will be the last time in your life you will have all the answers.
  3. To discover how the nights will feel, walk around the living room from 5:00PM to 10:00PM carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 8 to 12 lbs. At 10:00PM put the bag down, set the alarm for midnight and go to sleep. Get up at midnight and walk around the living room again with the bag until 1:00AM. Reset the alarm to 3:00AM. Since you can’t fall back to sleep, get up at 2:00AM and make a drink and watch reruns of Gilligans Island. At 2:45 AM fall asleep watching TV. Wake up when the alarm goes off. Sing songs in the dark to the bag until 4:00AM. Set the alarm for 5:00AM and go back to sleep. Get up when the alarm rings again. Make breakfast. Look cheerful. Keep this up for a year.
  4. Can you stand the mess that children make? To find out, smear peanut butter onto the sofa and jam on the curtain. Hide a fish stick behind the stereo and leave it there all summer. Stick you hands in the flower beds and then rub them on clean walls and towels, cover the dirt with crayon streaks. Leave the marks for at least 1 week. Clean them off and then repeat this every other week for a year. Go to the local Toys ‘R’ Us and spend $1000 on toys and furniture suitable for children under 3 years of age and spread 1/2 of it on the floor in the living room, 1/4 of it in the nursery and 1/4 of it in your bedroom. Leave this for 3 years. Now how does that look?
  5. Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems. First, buy an octopus and a net bag. Attempt to put the octopus into the net bag so that none of the arms hang out. Time allowed for this exercise: all morning.
  6. Keeping kids entertained is no easy task either. Take an egg carton. Using a pair of scissors and a jar of paint, turn it into an alligator. Now take an empty toilet paper tube. Using only scotch tape and a piece of foil, transform it into a Christmas cracker. Finally, with a milk container, a ping pong ball and an empty carton of Coco Pops, create an exact replica of the Eiffel Tower. Congratulations. You have now qualified for a place on the play group committee.
  7. Forget the Miata and buy a Taurus station wagon. And don’t think, if you leave it out in the driveway it will remain spotless and shining. Family cars just don’t look like that. Buy a chocolate ice cream bar and put it in the glove compartment. Leave it there a very long time. Take a quarter and insert it into the cassette player. Then take a family-sized package of Oreo cookies (double stuff) and mash them down behind the seat cushions of all the seats. Now run a garden rake down both sides of the car. There. Perfect!
  8. Get ready to go out. Wait outside the toilet for a half hour. Go out the front door. Come in again. Go out. Come back in. Go out again. Stroll down the front sidewalk. Walk back up it. Walk down it again. Then walk very slowly, down the street for 5 minutes, stopping to inspect, in excruciating detail, every cigarette butt, piece of used chewing gum, dirty tissue and dead insect along the way. Retrace your steps. Scream out loud that you’ve had as much as you can stand until the neighbours come out and stare at you. Give up and go back into the house. There, you are almost ready to try taking a small child for a walk.
  9. Feeding time is also a special treat. Hollow out a melon and make a small hole in one side. Suspend it from the ceiling on a string and start it swinging from side to side. Now take a bowl of soggy cereal and attempt to spoon it into the hole in the swinging melon by pretending to be an airplane or a choo choo train. Continue until half the cereal is gone. Then spill the rest in your lap, making sure that a lot of it falls onto the floor. You are now ready to feed a 12 month old baby.
  10. Shopping is an especially challenging skill to learn. A good exercise is to go to your local supermarket and take with you the nearest thing to a preschool child that you can find. A fully grown goat is an excellent choice. If you intend to have more than one small child, take more than one goat. Buy your week’s groceries without letting the goats out of your sight. When you get to the checkout counter, pay for everything the goats eat or destroy. Until you can handle this easily, do not even contemplate having children.
  11. Always repeat everything you say at least 5 times.