When Did I Get Like This? contest giveaway

Six days until on-sale date! To celebrate, I’m giving away a signed copy of my book to the parent with the best answer to this question:
What parenting thing do you do all the time that you swore you wouldn’t (before becoming a parent?)
Per the subtitle, here’s my top three: the screaming, the worrying,  the dinosaur-chicken-nugget buying.
How about you? 
Post to comments. We’ll announce a winner on Friday.

{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

jess March 31, 2010 at 7:11 pm

i never thought I would be the constant snack bringer. Baggies of cheerios or rainbow rings (the tree-hugger organic version of Froot Loops) are always in my purse, ready to feed to my child in church, in line somewhere, in the backseat of the car.


mishkamala March 31, 2010 at 7:11 pm

i swore never to allow a certain purple dinosaur into our sphere. 4 years and 2 kids later, i can spend entire days wearing my purple t-shirt, talking in my lowest, dorky, sing-songy voice, and wearing a scotch-taped paper tail on my $@%. the kicker was when i spent 200$ having a costumed impersonator at their recent dual birthday party and was forced to bid on ebay for the desired party favors…when did i get like this??? (:


Erin March 31, 2010 at 7:30 pm

ice cream for breakfast… nuff said.


Heidi March 31, 2010 at 7:49 pm

Guilt tripping, threatening to leave a child if they aren't ready to go when I am, to name 2.


Annie D March 31, 2010 at 7:54 pm

The "let you kids have a TV in their room so mommy can watch whatever she wants on the bog TV" mom. And I let him watch it at bedtime. And I may or may not allow him to watch The Family Guy.


Rebecca March 31, 2010 at 9:37 pm

I feed my kids frozen ravioli for dinner EVERY night. It's quick and they eat it, but I know it's not right.


mindse March 31, 2010 at 9:49 pm

I swore I would never communicate a message of warning by bugging my eyes out and holding up one finger like my mother used to do. But I now do that almost daily. I've given up trying not to become her.


Cathy March 31, 2010 at 9:51 pm

I was never going to be that parent whose kids had runny noses and no socks/shoes in public. I didn't realize that a kid can go from fresh-faced to looking like a snot-frosted doughnut in about thirty seconds flat, about forty times a day. I wasn't aware that they often take off their own shoes, generally at random, but most often RIGHT before we're walking out the door on a day when I have zero time to discover the shoe they have cleverly stashed in the toothbrush drawer in the bathroom. With half a bowl of mac and cheese.


Gerry Schramm March 31, 2010 at 10:02 pm

Deliver lectures on the value of hard work. Me, the guy who skated through school doing the least amount of work possible and still managed to find a solid career, lecturing his 8-year-old daughter about applying herself. What a joke. And the kicker is that I don't even believe it! It just sounds like something a father says to his kid, or more truthfully what my father said to me.


Robin Beynon Nash March 31, 2010 at 10:26 pm

The spit shine! I swore I'd never do it cause it totally grossed me out when my mom did it to me, but when theres no water and your son has dirt on his face, what's a mom to do??? Lick your thumb and wipe it off, thats what you do! Its even gross typing this :O(


Stephanie March 31, 2010 at 10:31 pm

Absolutely co-sleeping. I swore I would NEVER do it, ever. It's a practice of parents in third-world countries-we were WAY too sophisticated to do that! 6 months of no sleep changed our minds and every blissful minute of sleep for the past 3 and a half years have shown me that I was so wrong. (of course, now we have no idea how to get her out into her own bed…)


KellyB April 1, 2010 at 2:01 am

Before my daughter was born I begged people not to buy her any gifts that had to do with Sesame Street (especially anything Elmo). I recall taking back a few items simply because they were Sesame Street related. Well.. a year and a half later we currently own 5 Elmos, 2 Ernies and an assorted group of other cast members. Not to mention we tape the show everyday so I can pop it in to occupy her when I need to make dinner.


indywriter April 1, 2010 at 2:01 am

1. Saying "Talk to the wall, Mother." My mom used to say this and it drove me crazy.

2. Screaming like a crazy woman when ever we are in a public bathroom. I imagine that the soundtrack to my kid's nightmares is my voice desperately shrieking, "Don't touch that! Quit rubbing yourself all over the walls! This place is filthy! Use your foot to flush the toilet!" Common sense tells me that 30+ years of public bathrooms haven't killed me yet, but the unhinged, CSI-watching side of me knows that this place is like the Disneyworld of diseases and germs.

3. I always swore that I would stay home with my kids. But when the time came, I was the one with the better job and potential. I knew I would be miserable. And I was because I was working for the devil herself. But now I have a job I love. I have flexibility and good benefits. The time I spend away also helps me to value the time with my girls. My house may be cluttered, but my girls know I love them.


Cato April 1, 2010 at 4:10 am

i knew for sure that i would be organized and on-point. a clean house without disarray. a clean car without food particles strewn about the back seat and floor. random cheerios and banana peels found beneath the car seats. never any dried toothpaste on the bathroom sink and counter. dishes cleaned and put away after every meal. i knew for sure that my children would see a hard worker who could also be fun. a role model and aspire to be the same.
but, when did i get like this? i allow chaos. i won't touch it unless i can make it sparkle. days go by. i could say weeks, but i am in denial. it is sad, not out of control, but i promised i wouldn't be "that mom". but, i am. i am. i am. i am. gee whiz. when DID i get like this? i will never be able to put a time-frame on it, but it is something that is now innate in my entire family for the sake of sanity.


Heather April 1, 2010 at 5:04 am

I swore I would never let my kids scream like that on the plane.


Jess April 1, 2010 at 11:54 am

The crying. I'm not a crier, but yet I never realized that watching them grow up too fast would make me cry. Watching them cry over something important to them would make me want to cry with them. Knowing that someday they'll move out and start a life of their own, possibly including their own babies, will make me cry.


Anonymous April 1, 2010 at 12:17 pm

I swore I'd never be the mom who still cried every morning when leaving for work because I wanted to be a stay at home mom…… working from home stinks!

Jessica, Dayton PA


Erin, Downingtown, PA April 1, 2010 at 1:19 pm

I had high hopes that I'd never be the Mom that read all of the above and felt better about my self – check, check, check plus, yep, do that too, check… the obvious missing one is bribing "Get in the car now, quietly, and I will give you a lolly." Not to be confused with the less proactive but definately related, "caving", which is abolutely necessary this week in order to navigate the endless Scholastic Book Fair on the way out of daycare. (Also, are there some bathing suits that I should consider ironing? I appreciate the admonishment not to but you should see my pants right now, it's clearly the last thing on my mind.) Have a great weekend.


Katie Craft April 1, 2010 at 1:47 pm

I swore I would never be a screamer. My mother was a screamer, so I promised myself I would never scream like a banshee! Well, I have done it, and I will probably continue to do it. Sometimes we all hit the end of our rope, and the most effective way to get my child to listen is to scream!! I hate that I do it, but it is almost an uncontrollable reaction at times. Being a working mom, I just don't have the patience I thought I would have. Granted, I have a very good boy, but sometimes, he gets this Banshee-screamin'-no patience-crazy momma!! 🙂



Paola April 1, 2010 at 2:36 pm

My mom use to yell at us, ground us, hit us (hey it was more than 30 years ago) but the worst was she would not accept any criticism or comments from anyone on earth including my dad let alone anyone outside of the family (neighbour, teacher…) I swore I will never yell, ground or hit! I was able to stick to only the third one – who doesn't yell right?? But the one thing that I swore I won't do and that I really thought I would stick to for sure was accepting criticism….I just can't hear the name of my child coming out of anybody without preparing my lioness claws and getting ready to attack …No one, oh no one including my husband is allowed and you have to see me at parent-teacher interview: horrible sight!! ….When did I become like this? It will be 8 years in June…


AZ Mommy April 1, 2010 at 3:15 pm

The parent who lets her child rule her life. Yea that's me.


gniotnl April 2, 2010 at 2:04 am

To never be manipulated by a 5 year old, well actually it started when she was 2!


Elspeth April 2, 2010 at 2:57 am

I swore I'd never be 'that mom' at baseball games. I'm not crazy and rude – I'm just really passionate and I cheer loudly for all the kids equally, I'm sure of it….

I didn't want to be that mom who gives weird/evil/crazy looks and stares to the kiddo. However, I also was committed to not having that boy who held his private parts and hopped up and down when he needed to pee. Because of this I was the mom giving the stink eye while potty training the boy. If his hands went anywhere near the nether regions he got the evil eye and the don't even think about it drag by the upper arm to the nearest restroom.


Amanda April 2, 2010 at 3:52 am

I swore I would never be the mom who smells her baby's butt to see if they pooped, especially in public. But it's so much more convenient than undressing and having to re-dress if they didn't! Guilty.


Christy April 2, 2010 at 4:08 pm

I swore my kids would be perfectly turned out in precious clothes. My daughter is now 8 and her favorite thing in the world is her was-white-now-gray too-tight snoopy t-shirt, which she wears to school almost daily. And I don't care.


Anonymous April 3, 2010 at 10:11 pm

I won't even bother leaving an entry. Robin Beynon Nash, the spit shiner, is a clear winner. Pop Greene.


Colleen April 28, 2010 at 7:26 pm

I never, ever thought I would "wash" my child's pacifier off but putting it in my own mouth but I have. Yuck! It's just so gross . . . the things we do for the sake of our children.


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