I woke up the other morning to my teething six month old sucking on my neck. At first I thought it was the dog. Then the grogginess faded and I realized we don’t have a dog. I quickly pulled her away but it was too late. There it was. That faint purple bruise that could make even the most brazen teen sport a turtleneck in July. Yup, my six month old gave me a hickey.
Babies are like that. They suck. If they’re not sucking their hands or one of the million gummy teethers you got at your baby shower or worse, your boob, they’re sucking the life out of you—one bleary-eyed night at a time.
I’m no baby expert. In fact, even the girls on 16 and Pregnant probably have more experience than I do. That said, my mom-to-be friends are always asking me questions—and not just the kind you read in “What to Expect The First Year,” (though if you’re looking for legit advice close this page and refer to that book). Nope. Instead, they want the real story—the stuff they know only I would be crazy enough to ask a doctor or, quite frankly, to even worry about in the first place.
So here goes, a list of the things I’ve learned so far as a mom. And yes, much to his dismay, I actually did consult with my doctor about much of this. Bless his soul.
1. Yes, all babies make zombie noises at night. So close your eyes and take the helmet off. She won’t eat your brain while you’re sleeping.
2. The hum of a vacuum instantly turns them into narcoleptics. My daughter will either be the best housekeeper who ever existed or the worst.
3. If you accidentally shoot your kid in the eye with breast milk she will not go blind. Same goes for your husband or any of your visiting friends.
4. If you feed your baby every time she cries you are not teaching her to eat her feelings.
5. Don’t abruptly switch formulas or you might quickly understand the enormous difference between spit up and vomit. And, it is huge. Very huge.
6. If your baby is gassy get baby gas drops because pulling her finger won’t help.
7. If your baby looks exactly like your husband it’s ok to be really mad. Recognizing you’re a narcissist is the first step to becoming a better mom.
8. If you use a breast pump don’t watch Meet The Parents or every time you stick your nipple in that plastic cone you’ll hear Robert DiNiro say, “I have nipples Greg, can you milk me?”
9. Seriously, it really is ok to be really, really mad that your baby doesn’t look like you. You’re not vain at all. I swear.
10. Babies really do suck. Invest in turtlenecks.