Trust us, parenting is a helluva job but guaranteed to be the most rewarding work you’ll ever do. That said, it can be time-consuming and exhausting, and it will change your life in ways you can’t even imagine. We asked parents about what you should enjoy before having a baby.
1. Have eggs Benny as often as you can
That brunch hot spot everyone is talking about? It’s worth lining up for. (Who cares how long it takes to get a table? There’s no timer ticking down to meltdown o’clock.) And then leisurely eat all those delicious things while reading the newspaper. Chances are, you probably won’t be eating out for brunch (and you definitely won’t be reading the newspaper!) for the next five years at least. —Leah R.
2. See the world
Travel to places that would otherwise be challenging for a family. Want to see Australia, New Zealand or India? Better go now. Skip the resorts and Disney World and save them for when you have kids—they’ll be so much better with them. —Lesley D.
3. Finish that reno
There is always one or two (or three) things you still need to finish up after the reno is done. Try to get it all done before kids—otherwise, you’ll be living with unpainted baseboards for years. —Sun N.
4. Go out—and then enjoy the morning after
I would definitely go on more dates and stock up on morning sex before that becomes a thing of the past. —Catherine D.
5. Run errands after work
Savour the chance to “pop” into shops after work. Stop off at that new taco joint if you get hungry or try that Zumba class. Do it all—just because you can. —Danielle C.
6. Walk outside at night, without having to pay someone
It’s a little thing, but just walking around the block when the sun goes down, holding hands with your partner, becomes more precious (and expensive) once you have to book a babysitter.
7. Wear all your cute dresses and shoes
For about one to three years post-baby, you won’t want to wear anything nice: You’ll have baby spit-up on you all the time, someone will use your shirt as a tissue or to wipe her dirty hands, and you can’t breastfeed in most cute summer dresses. Jewellery that can be yanked and high heels that slow you down aren’t really practical when you’re chasing small children. —Ariel B.
8. Appreciate the little things
Enjoy going to the washroom, having a shower and getting dressed all by yourself. —Jessica S.
9. Don’t research parenting—yet
Don’t try to learn everything from the books—they’ll just make you more anxious. Wait and learn from your kids—you’ll realize that every kid is different. —Monica K.
10. Sleep till noon on Saturdays
One of the miraculous things you’ll discover when you become a parent is that there is an enormous expanse of time in the early morning hours of the weekend. Until then, I would encourage blissful ignorance. —Kathryn H.
11. Do something spontaneous
Have a day with absolutely nothing planned and no structure (no naps to accommodate!) and just do whatever you and your partner feel like doing at the exact moment, without planning in advance or worrying about timing whatsoever. —Ariel B.
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