The first year of my daughter's life was an absolute blur of adrenaline, formula, dirty diapers, and utter happiness. I think most parents feel the same about their child's first year; they barely remember details but, by the end, they've doubled their skills and become the most efficient (exhausted) versions of themselves. And there are, of course, lessons your kids will teach you, both big and small, before they even turn 1 year old.
Becoming a parent is a crash course in baby-related skills, sure, but also in general life skills that will absolutely serve you well in the years to come. When my daughter was only a few months old, we had such a hard time getting her to nap and I obsessed about the fact that I just couldn't get her to sleep. I remember one particularly miserable day when she was only 6 weeks old and hadn't napped for eight hours straight. I thought I was going to lose my mind until it hit me: tomorrow was going to be a new day, no matter what.
It was a light bulb moment for me in my parenting life, but also as a person. Just because she didn't nap once today doesn't mean that's what's going to happen tomorrow, and worrying about it happening again tomorrow isn't going to change whether it happens again. Best to pack it in and try again in a new, fresh day.
Not all the lessons you learn by the time your kid turns 1 are quite that monumental. However, being able to change a diaper on an airplane seat without a stewardess realizing you're flouting the fasten seatbelt sign does give you a certain sense of satisfaction, if I do say so myself. So, with that in mind, here's a rundown of all the things you'll learn about yourself, your kid, and your life before they even turn 1.