1. When in the midst of deep sleep, a large aircraft could land on the roof, and you wouldn’t hear a thing. Yet, when a faint (read: barely audible) “eh” filters through the intercom, you awake with a start, and, as if on auto-pilot, begin to make your way to the nursery.
2. A quick jaunt to the grocery store alone is so rare that when it does happen, it feels strangely liberating.
3. Although an evening out sans kids is badly needed, the prospect of pumping a bottle, packing a diaper bag, and rounding up a sitter will seem like more trouble than it’s worth. So you'll gladly settle for a bottle of wine, a spot on the couch, and DVR'ed programming.
4. Your sleep deprivation has reached an all-time high, and there’s no end in sight to this vicious cycle. It is your hope that your sleep pattern will recalibrate itself by 2027.
5. Gone are the days when you could get away with doing the wash once a week. Now you’re left wondering where the hell all this dirty laundry is coming from. It seems to be multiplying at the rate of wet gremlins.
6. Nothing you do in the bathroom is private anymore. Nothing.
7. You’ve developed surprising upper body strength and dexterity which allows you to hold a thirty-plus-pound toddler and a pouch of pureed applesauce with one hand and fetch the broom and dustpan from the closet with the other.
8. It becomes abundantly clear that you may never again do one thing at a time.
9. You never thought your dance party playlist would include songs from Yo Gabba Gabba!, but it does, and guess what? You kind of like it.
10. In the quiet of the night while you’re rocking your baby to sleep, or when your toddler – with wet, sticky hands and all – doles out a hug and a kiss when you need it the most but least expect it, you realize that you have never, ever known a love like this.
*This photo was not staged. I left my shoes by the door, and, unbeknownst to me, Scotty had retreated into his room with my precious Jimmy Choos so that he could use them as a slide for his Little People, which actually served as the catalyst for this post.