A is for Anxiety. Anxious Mom tiptoeing in the room like a thief to not wake me up. Over anxious Mom biting her nails while peeing, thinking I would jump off the crib or such.
B is for Books. The fat parenting bibles that will tell you what babies should do when. It’s almost like they don’t let you be a parent until you have read a couple. “Honey, I think the baby is choking”. “Wait, let me check in the book first if we are supposed to pick him up immediately or will doing that spoil him in the long run” **
C is for Crying. Of babies when they need something or when they just want to test their own sound. And of their psychic Moms from a guilt of being away from them or from watching them grow up everyday.
D is for Diapers. Gazillions of them in the bins or strewn on the floor at night. They magically get dirty right after you have changed them. Mom once had a dream that the world was ending so she needed to stock up on diapers – true story.
E is for Ex-husband, Ex-friends, Ex-peace, Ex-sleep, Ex-everything, Ex-your life. Oh the husband is technically there, but he is now a Dad who takes night feeding shifts over doing other husband-ish stuff, like sleeping on the couch. And friends can expect a call back in 5 years or so.
F is for Forums where you seek help from other harried Moms. Ask anything under the sun and there will always be a mamaofsixandcounting2013 or earn_money_on_internet_007 to answer. “If I change the ringtone of my phone, will my baby still like it?” (That question has been asked for real by inspired_by_barbie_123 on a forum once).
G is for Dr. Google. The biggest parenting adviser of our times. When your doctor prescribes antibiotics for your baby, you don’t just give them to him. You google if indeed that doctor’s medical degree was worth its salt.
H is for Hurry up, we are getting late. For our playgroup, for our swimming class, for our reading session, for our baby gym class. And for our bedtime – as we need to be fresh in the morning for all those classes. We will miss the best seats if we don’t hurry up.
I is for Illness. We babies get ill like crazy. Every virus, every bacteria, every mosquito is looking for those chubby pink rolls to attack. Take us to a place where there is more than one of us and it is guaranteed that we will wake up at 3 AM with a fever or tummy bug. And no one but a parent alone can think that their germy baby with a runny nose is still kissable.
J is for Job. The eternal question of whether you should join your job back after baby. The perpetual debate of - Which job is more demanding? Dad’s office one or your stay-at-home one – the verdict of which will decide who gets to do laundry on the weekend.
K is for Keep calm and carry the heck on, Mama. No, seriously. Breathe in, breathe out and go have that dark chocolate bar. I will sleep only when I want to.
L is for Late to reach everywhere. Since we are never able to H for Hurry up after all, what with diaper emergencies right when we are about to leave or a general tantrum to add to the thrill.
M is for Milestone. By so and so age baby should be able to stand on one leg and spell hippopotamus correctly. If he doesn’t then he may just be in the 5th percentile for acrobatic skills and complex linguistics and you, a parenting failure.
N is for No. Like no, you don’t eat food off the floor. Or no, you don’t pull someone’s hair when they come to hug you. No, you don’t say no to Mommy. “Did you just say no to me? No, I didn’t teach you that!”
O is for Others, who absolutely, one hundred percent stop bothering you once you have a baby. You have a whole new battle to fight and have no time for anyone or anything insignificant. So stuff like ‘why didn’t she call me back‘, is really a story of the past now. About time.
P is for Picking things from the floor. ALL.DAY.LONG. Eventually the floor becomes your place of storing things after you have put them back in their place for the 127th time. For us the laptop chargers and house keys are generally in the hallway and are found when someone trips over them.
Q is for Questions. Initially parents ask all questions and also answer them. “Do you want to have that tasteless mashed broccoli? Yes, you do!”. Later on, question asking becomes the turf of their inquisitive little monsters, while parents have to succumb to a “Because I said so” after having exhausted all sane replies to the incessant stream of their whys.
R is for Repetition. You are not a parent until you have sung our favorite song at least 56 times a day. We want to read the same book every night. We want to find things at same places every day. We are creatures of routine, so you don’t need to stress out on us getting bored with the same thing everyday.
S is for Sleep, or the lack of it. Now there are kids who sleep through the night from day 1 and wake up as happy campers. They never fuss at bedtime and nap very predictably for 2-3 hours in a day. Their Moms make all other sleep deprived Moms envious. They don’t need any sleep aids like rocking, nursing etc. Such kids generally don’t exist.
T is for Themed birthday parties. Once upon a time this world was a very happy place. People celebrated birthdays, ate cake, gave presents and slept back at home peacefully. Then came facebook and pinterest. And the advent of themed birthday parties. Considering my obsession for cleaning things, my 2nd birthday cake will probably be an edible vacuum cleaner that also makes sounds. Pressure’s on, Mom!
U is for Unused toys and other baby contraptions. Like our fancy electric baby swing specially imported and used for a total of 6 minutes. Stop tricking me with toys that enhance-my-gross-motor-and-sensory-skills-and-are-BPA-free. The real stuff at home does the job better.
V is for Very happy. Don’t just think of us as helpless owners of squishy marshmallow cheeks. We babies are therapeutic little beings. Despite all the hard work we require, we always make our parents happy, very happy. Now that’s quite a smart deal we have struck with them, isn’t it?
W is for Weight. And the obsession to reach a certain number by my certain birthday. And the longing look at those pre-pregnancy denims hanging at a wardrobe corner. And the mellow sigh to see them not fit anymore. And the revengeful determination to work out. And the clandestine giving in to a helping of cake. “Darn it, I need those calories to be able to look after the baby”.
X is for Xylophone, as it says in our alphabet books. Bring me one kid who can pronounce that correctly and I will think of something else to add to this parenting alphabet against X. Until then, xylophone it is.
Y is for You. It only seems apt that this comes at the end of the alphabet. Since parenting is a game I own, Mom. So, me and my things first. You’ve had your chance with your Mom. Some perspective there?
Z is for Zzzzzzz. I need to doze off now. Go, sleep when I sleep as all the B for Books say.
**That never happened with us, by the way.