It's hard to really know what you're getting into before you have a kid. We've all heard the clichés about how being a parent is the hardest job in the world, or how you don't realize how deeply you can love someone until you have a child, but what about the truth? What about something you won't find on a coffee mug? Look no further than social media, because the photos of Chris Pratt and Anna Faris' son, Jack, keep it absolutely real, and their streams could be used by alien anthropologists to understand Earth parenting in a nutshell.
I understand those who are wary of the idea of anyone keeping it real on social media, especially a celebrity. Most people have more than a few parents in their feed who only share the picture-perfect moments and humble brags, which only make others feel worse about their own lives. Then there are the Debbie Downers who think that Facebook is their own personal complaint department. But scroll through the photos below and you'll see that Pratt and Faris share the good and the bad. This should be required reading for all new parents, because it will tell you more about what to expect than What to Expect ever did.
Weekends Are For Cuddling On The Couch
Sure, there will be birthday parties, and trips to amusement parks, and visits to the playground. But being a parent doesn't mean you have to be "on" seven days a week. Some of my favorite days have been spent on the couch with my husband and son.
You're Never More Proud Than When You See Your Kid Master A New Skill
Look at that little face. Look how happy he is with himself! Now imagine you're the one who taught him how to catch that fish (or tie those shoes, or read that book, or beat that level of Super Mario Brothers). That's a whole new level of pride.
Family Photos Are Never Not Awkward
Think about how hard it is to make a normal human face for a picture. Then multiply it by the number of people in your family (if one of them is under 21, multiply that by a million). There is no chance that at least one of you isn't going to end up looking like a huge dork, sorry.
No Mom's Makeup Is Immune To Toddlers
It's parents' faults, really. We teach them to use crayons and markers and paint, then set them loose in a room full of more crayons and markers and paint where every surface is blank. What did we expect? That's how I ended up with a blue sparkly toilet, and any parent with a speck of makeup in their house will most likely go through it, too.
You Will Indulge In Their Obsessions
Why yes, I can recite Thomas and the Jet Engine, all the dialogue from Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, and the script from the hayride at our local petting zoo.
Kids Show You The Magic In Every Little Thing
When is the last time you took a moment to marvel at the beauty in everyday things, like a rainbow? Toddlers will remind you how magical they are.
It's Hard To Be Mad At A Face That Cute
Jack trashes the house, disrespects his mom, then smiles, and all is forgiven. Fun fact: children are cute so that we don't and can't abandon them. I mean, why else would we put up with their nonsense?
If You Weren't A Dinosaur Expert Before, You Will Be
Hands up if you knew this Tyrannosaurus Rex was inaccurate because it should have feathers. Hands up if you can name more than 10 dinosaurs. Hands up if you can list which geological period each one lived in, even though your kid is now in high school and doesn't care about dinosaurs anymore.
Seriously, Never Trust A Quiet Child
It could be worse. Go ahead and Google "diaper cream hair." There are more than seven million results.
Like Cats, All Small Children Love Boxes More Than I Love Anything
So brown. So rectangular. I don't know why they love them so much, but if you ever get caught recycling one, you're in for it, let me tell you.
We've All Been Faced With A Public Puddle
It will happen to you, unless you literally don't take your child out in public until they're in middle school. For about a year after I started potty training my son, I kept a gallon-sized freezer bag in my purse containing a pair of underwear, a pair of pants, and a Shamwow. I used this emergency kit more than once. Trust.
You Get To Relive Your Childhood
Lego kits, swings, cartoons, hot cocoa, chicken nuggets... All the things you loved as a kid are now socially acceptable for you to enjoy again, provided you have a toddler enjoying them along with you.
Messes Are Inevitable
You can't teach a toddler to be neat; you can only stop buying white clothing. Also, keep a tub of baby wipes in every room and every car.
Just Give Up On Having Nice Things For The Next 20 Years
Buy all your furniture and dishes at IKEA. Your entire home will be covered in crayon, crumbs, and pee for the foreseeable future.
There's Nothing More Adorable Than Watching Your Spouse Play With Your Child
Watching your favorite people, who are also each others' favorite people, being adorable together. It doesn't get any better than that.
Kids Are An Excellent Excuse To Visit The Zoo
Grown woman squeeing over penguins and giraffes? Weird. Mommy introducing her little one to nature? Goals.
Ditto Making S'Mores
It's a little but terrifying as a parent, because there's the added element of "OMG what if my baby gets burned?!" But s'mores are still awesome, and now you're old enough to know that you should be using quality chocolate, so they'll taste even better.