You’re So Not Almost Ready for a Baby, Even If You Think You Are
Look, you're not ready to have a baby. Hey-O! Yup. You're probably in your late twenties or early thirties, and you've gotten some shit figured out, and now you're pretty sure you're "almost ready" to have a baby. But a baby is the ultimate, cosmic limit-tester of all ultimate cosmic limits, and no matter what you do to prepare, you will still find yourself thrown for a loop. (Also, experiencing that loop and being able to lord it over others is one of the few best senses of entitlement you'll probably ever get in this lifetime, and I finally now understand why all other parents did this to me, too. Bastards.) But, hey. At least I want to explain it to you.
Ready!? Pshaw! Anyone who thinks they are actually ready to stare this beast directly in the eyes isn't wearing her cervical thinkin' cap. It's like, can you be "ready" for a cyclone? Can you be "ready" for the moon? Can you be "ready" for a dinosaur eating a cupcake?
In fact, if I were selling my own Baby Squad™ Fitness Program for Actual Baby Readiness, it would not involve tickets to Europe, but would come with the following drills/regimen for the entire year prior to conception. (Yes, conception! Yes, a year! Not doing anything fun while already pregnant is not actually all that hard and therefore not true readiness training.):
- Practice wrestling a large, slippery fish three times a week.
- Wake up every two hours at night, punch yourself in the face, walk around for 28 minutes pleading in jibberish. Go back to "sleep." Repeat.
- Socialize with friends in 18-second increments.
- Practice asking for the check, boxing up your food and exiting a restaurant in under sixty seconds — two bites into the meal.
- Watch 38% of any film or television show; never see the ending or resolution.
- Read the same three paragraphs of a novel once every two weeks; fall asleep.
- Shower every three to five days, but only for two minutes.
- Hire a makeup artist to make you up to look 10 years older. Look at yourself in the mirror, then laugh, cry, laugh, cry, laugh, cry. Do not go get a drink.
- Pack two additional bags of random stuff to carry with you every time you leave the house.
- Stand around a tennis court and catch fly balls with one hand for two hours a day while also preparing a peanut butter sandwich.
- Practice wrestling aforementioned large, slippery fish, then dress it in seasonally appropriate outfit, including hat and/or jacket. Then go back, remove all clothing, and apply sunscreen. Re-dress fish.
- Memorize The Cat in the Hat, then repeat every evening between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m.
- Make 24 hours of baby-crying audio; hit play the moment you take a phone call, fire up your computer, or begin speaking any sentences to another human that contain important or useful information.
- Imagine a mental written list of your responsibilities for each day, tear it in half, burn one piece, take a (literal) shit on the other one. (Sorry.)