I have a friend I adore. She’s smart, compassionate, funny, open-minded, and operates power tools. Correctly. So when she told me last week that she’s going to have a baby, I was ecstatic. More delightful people like her in the world? Huzzah!
We squealed and hugged and spoke of Storkish matters, the way girlfriends do: Nausea. Maternity leave. Glass of wine or no glass of wine. Modified yoga poses. And the alarming way her belly is widening in multiple directions — all at once.
But I left feeling that there should have been more to our chat. I wished we’d bounded — for just a few minutes — right over gestation and delivery to talk about actual harsh-light-of-day parenthood. Because making a baby is about more than making a baby; it’s about raising a child — which is Way. Exponentially. Huger.
So here’s what I wish I’d told my friend. Let’s call it What to Expect After You’re Expecting:
Having kids is, in every way imaginable, an extreme sport. Rife with dramatic contradictions, it’s the most draining and fulfilling thing you’ll ever feel utterly unqualified for.