When you become a parent, your life changes dramatically. You must begin to consider things like school, doctor’s appointments, and bedtimes. You must also be more cautious about what you say and do, because your children are constantly watching and learning from you. I learned all of these things along the long road of motherhood, some the easy way, some the hard way, but all of them were rewarding.
It would be an understatement to say that this is not the case. After a certain age, most of us have the observational skills to recognize that there are numerous changes that occur when you become a parent. Some of the more noticeable changes are that you have less time for yourself, that you must budget your time and money differently, and that your priorities shift. However, there are numerous less visible changes that occur. For example, you may discover that you are more patient, organized, and understanding. Parenting is a big responsibility, but it can also be a lot of fun. If you’re considering becoming a parent, be ready for significant changes in your life.
While eFrog and I have those ever so precarious baby steps behind us, my sister and her wife are just getting started. So today, I thought that I would write something for them.
I was in charge of organizing my sister’s baby shower. I wanted to make sure it was perfect, so I made sure to include all of her favorite games and foods. We started off with the classic “Guess the Baby Food” game. We had a variety of different foods, ranging from sweet to savory. My sister was able to guess all of them correctly. For the main course, we served a variety of finger foods. My sister’s favorite is chicken salad, so I made sure to include that. For dessert, we had a beautiful three-tiered cake. It was decorated with pink and blue icing, to represent the upcoming arrival of my sister’s baby girl.
The next game we played was the “Guess the Baby’s Gender” game. We had a few different ways for people to guess, including a “predict the size of the belly” game and a “guess the number of diapers in the box” game. My sister was able to guess the gender correctly. She is having a baby girl! We were all so excited for her. For the final game, we did a “guess the baby’s name” game. My sister had a list of names that she and her husband had been considering. We all took turns guessing which one they would ultimately choose. It was so much fun!
If you ever find yourself in the position of organizing/hosting a baby shower I can only offer a couple of tips that made it easier for us to make sure everything went smoothly. First off when it comes to anything like this you need to have a guest list pretty early on. As you have already read, we did the whole gender reveal thing per my sister’s wishes. That meant both men and women were invited, though I don’t think that that is a feature of this type of celebration alone, but my sister wanted her husband there, and he didn’t want to be the only man.
Get your guest list together as early as possible. This will help you determine early on the number of guest you intend to invite and what type of food to serve.
Next, you need to decide on a theme, of course our theme was the reveal and I styled everything around that including the games that I have already mentioned. This can be anything from a classic baby shower to a more unique theme, like this one where we revealed the gender at the end. Then you need to pick a location. This can be anywhere from your home, their home, your mother’s home or something more involved like a park pavilion or a rented hall. And finally, you need to decide on a date. This is important so that everyone can clear their schedules and be there to celebrate the new arrival.
Once your have that done you can go about picking out invites and either have them printed like we did or do it yourself. Since my sister wanted the whole reveal thing to be incorporated into the party we spend an entire Saturday afternoon looking through designs online. I was glad when she finally settled on one and honestly, I think she was too. But that has never been my thing and I was relieved when she said “here it is” since it was getting stressful looking at them. They honestly all look sort of similar, at least to me. She was of a different opinion, obviously.
From my experience games are one of the most important parts of the shower – regardless of the theme or people attending – because they help break the ice and get everyone involved.
Parenting Changes Everything: How Becoming a Parent Will Surprise You
Parenthood is something for which one is never truly ready. You believe that you are, but the truth is that you are not. When you have children, your life will go in so many different directions that it’s hard to keep track of it all. The following are the three most surprising things that change over time:
Suddenly You No Longer Have as Much Free Time (At All)
Do you remember when you used to have an almost unlimited amount of time at your disposal (after work, chores, and such)? Those times are distant memory when you have children. Since you became a parent, you no longer have complete control over your time. You have to plan everything around your child’s schedule and their requirements. It is not always simple, but it is well worth the effort, at least for us it was.
As a Parent You Have to Be Much More Organized
Parenting requires a lot of organization skills. And while you might not have them at first, you quickly pick them up through your sudden on the job training. How hard can it be? Well, if you are organized it isn’t and that is the point. But you have to keep track of things like: their doctor’s appointments, your child’s school activities, food – clothing – shelter, and everything in between. If you’re not organized, it’s easy to let things slip through the cracks.
This goes for anything in life really, but when things slip between the cracks when you are busy as a parent you run the risk of disappointing them. While, life can be full of disappoint if you let it, keeping an overview of everything can help make things run smoothly in your household. That is why I am an obsessive list maker. BUT, nobody has ever complained about forgetting their toothbrush when we go on vacation so there is that!
You Become More Patient, Seriously Zen, Patient
Being a parent requires a significant amount of patience. There will be times when you question your mental stability, but you have to keep in mind that this is merely a passing phase in your life. It’s not going to be like this forever. You have to maintain your composure and ride out the storm.
The experience of parenting is one that is fraught with difficulty but rich in rewards. It is not always simple, but it is well worth the effort. When you become a parent, you’ll notice changes in many unexpected areas, such as the ones listed above.
When you have children for the first time, it is a completely new and extraordinary experience for you. You are instantly responsible for another person’s life, which can be a frightening as well as a rewarding experience. Some of the joys of becoming a parent for the first time are being able to witness your child’s development and growth, to see them accomplish their goals, and to simply take pleasure in their company. It has the potential to be a wonderful and memorable time that you will cherish for the rest of your life.
Being a parent for the first time is not without its difficulties, that much is obvious. It’s possible that you constantly feel tired, that you worry about whether or not you’re doing everything correctly, and that you have the impression that you’ll never get a break from your responsibilities. However, these obstacles are all a necessary part of the journey, and they will make the rewards that much more satisfying when they are overcome.
Therefore, if you are a parent for the first time, I hope you enjoy the ride! It will be one of the most challenging and difficult experiences of your life, but it will also be one of the most rewarding.