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13 Things That Aren't (But Should Be) in Parenting Books

23rd March 2018 

Sure, sure. You’ve read 50 different articles on breast versus bottle, how to discipline fairly and how to choose the right school. But they never tell you THIS……

How to fold a pram without it snapping on your hand like a mousetrap.
Hands up who has pram pain and buggy bruise? On second thoughts, don’t raise your hand. It’ll hurt too much.

How to enjoy a 3-hour old coffee which has cooled and formed a little film on the top.
Because let’s face it, that’s how we have to drink it these days.

How to retreat from their room without waking them.
Finally. FINALLY. Everyone is asleep. And now it is time for Ninja Parent to vacate the room. Creep slowly, light on the feet, side-step the creaky floorboard. Almost there when I elbow the lamp and have to start all over again. 

How to change a boy baby nappy without “the yellow fountain of doom”.
I’m pretty sure they’re saving it up for the moment the little tape flaps get ripped open. And before you know it, it’s aimed at your eye and warm liquid is flying towards you at record speed. It burns. IT BURNS. Oh the ammonia. The humiliation. The weird taste on my lips. Blurgh.

How to read minds.
It’s World Book Day tomorrow. And by tomorrow, we mean in 12-hours’ time. The letter about it is wedged in a trainer which has taken up residence down the back of the sofa. Oh, and your children will be totally heartbroken if they don’t have an awesome costume. And their favourite book is the one with the rabbits, NOT the Argos catalogue. So they can’t go in carrying an iron.

How to avoid saying something your own parent said.
“Because if you don’t eat your crusts you won’t get curly hair.” Nooooooooooooooo! I said it. I didn’t even think. And now I can feel my own hairs greying and dropping out as I inwardly cringe in horror.

How to remember….erm….you know. The thing.
It’s there, somewhere at the back of my mind. There was something I was supposed to do. Doctor’s appointment? No. Grocery shopping? No, done that. What. WAS IT? (Is it still called “Baby Brain” when they’re 12?)

How to open child-proof medicine bottles.
Because when they actually need the medicine it’s 4am and I too have the brain power of a toddler. Is it push down and squeeze? Pull up and rotate? Grip and cry? I don’t know anymore.

How to remove nappy rash cream from sofa cushions.
And my dress. And my tights. And my hair. And my coffee cup (which is decidedly cold. See above).

How to arrive at anything on time.
Who else takes nine attempts to leave the house? We go back because I left my mobile in the kitchen. We go back because we didn’t bring spare nappies. We return AGAIN when we remember the appointment is actually tomorrow. It’s like I’m attached to my house by a bungee cord and every time I try to leave it twangs me back. BOING.

How to get questionable stains out the carpet.
Could be chocolate. COULD be. Could be made by a human, a dog, a bike tyre or a mix of all of three. Why isn’t there a bottle in the supermarket labelled “Buy This If You Have a Family and It Will Remove Any Stain and If Someone Licks the Carpet While It’s Drying It Won’t Poison Them”.  Is it too much to ask?

How to not cry as much.
Cry at the school gate. Cry at their assembly. Cry when I’m proud of them. Cry when I’m angry at them. Cry when they say “I love you”. Where did all these tears come from? I’m going to dehydrate. 

How to embrace the chaos.
I’m getting there, I am. I don’t clench when they colour outside the lines anymore. I let them be who they are MOST of the time. I just have to accept the house will never be as tidy as it once was. But that’s okay, it has little lives in it now.

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Related blogs: 

10 Reasons Why Having Multiples Changes Your Life Forever

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Never Have I Ever: Parent Edition

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