Are you ready for parenthood? A Helpful Checklist just for you!

by Janelle Hanchett

So occasionally I come across some little quiz or whatever “helping” people determine if they’re ready to become a parent. This is, of course, totally ridiculous, because there is no possible way anybody could ever be “ready” for the train wreck that is New Parenthood.

You can’t prepare for that. (Neither the joys nor the horrors.)

Go ahead, read BabyCenter and Parenting Magazine, buy all the books, let them lull you into a space of confidence and security…but get ready to fall EVEN HARDER once that kid comes and you realize they sold you LIES.

I repeat: there is no preparing for this.

There are, of course, our super over-achieving types who make spreadsheets to record poops and pees and have money coming out their ears and therefore buy all the gear and DO EVERYTHING PERFECTLY – but, in my experience, those are usually the people who suffer the most, especially when their kid turns out to be the most non-spreadsheet-adaptable human on the planet. Invariably, they end up with the kid that defies all logic, routine or reason.  They have the freaking nutjob baby who sleeps like one hour a week and wails the rest of the time. (While watching Baby Einstein and doing flashcards, of course.) By the way, Baby Einstein is like the only thing my baby will watch for more than 12 seconds…SCORE!

But if a checklist actually existed that may actually help people determine whether they are ready for day-to-day, on-the-ground parenthood, it would (in my [dark, twisted] opinion) look something like this:

Are you ready to be a parent? Let’s find out! Mark all the items on the below list that are true for you. If you choose 20 or more, you’re ready for parenthood!

  1. I only like to sleep when other people tell me I can sleep.
  2. I enjoy using the restroom in the company of others.
  3. I like poop.
  4. I like poop on my hands.
  5. If I were to, say, find silly putty stuck between my bed sheets, I’d think it was cute.
  6. My greatest pleasure in life is driving humans around in a hurry.
  7. I believe money should be spent on character-building activities of questionable value and Starbucks.
  8. Quarterly sex will suffice.
  9. I enjoy receiving unsolicited advice from toothless women who smell like gin.
  10. I also like it when they touch my belly.
  11. I seek opportunities to engage in outrageously high-stakes activities for which I am totally underprepared.
  12. If I could, I would wash approximately 12,000 garments a day.
  13. I like guilt.
  14. I like constant talking and a low hum of irritating, indecipherable noise.
  15. I prefer my tits closer to my knees.
  16. When walking around my house barefoot, I throw food and small toys on the ground because I like the feel of them between my toes.
  17. I prefer to work during vacations.
  18. In restaurants, I like to walk around every four minutes and eat my food standing up while chasing a squirrel on crack.
  19. My goal in life is to act every day exactly like my mother even though I think I’m not.
  20. I’m okay with never seeing the floor of my car again.
  21. I’m ready to want to stab myself in the eye with a toothpick on a sometimes hourly basis then somehow, at the end of the day, cry because I realize my life won’t always be like this.
  22. In short, I’M READY FOR MADNESS.

Now why don’t they write THAT on BabyCenter?


  • eringirl

    1. You are flippin hilarious.

    2. My friend did something similar, but with less swearing:

    • Cyristy

      What swearing? You are kid of weird with this statement. I think that it was just a woman expressing themselves. You are welcome to share, but why knock someone else?

      • Buck

        You’re reading too far into a simple comment.

        Also, don’t forget – “Comment policy: try not to be a dick.”

  • eringirl


    anything that might possibly, even just a little teeny tiny bit, prepare you for parenting, means nothing when you have twins.


  • kate

    gotta make sure heidi reads this one– she’s making a five year plan…

  • Jo Eberhardt

    Damn it, I was totally going to write something similar to this later this week. Now everyone will think I copied you (and did a much worse job). Great post. 🙂

  • Cara

    OMG I love this “If I could, I would wash 12,000 garments a day.” PREACH, sister!

    Erin sent me over, and now I’ll totally check out your blog!

  • Stephanie

    Holy God that’s funny. I’m even showing it to my husband to read. And that’s big.

  • Karen Hug-Nagy

    That is hilarious, I love your blog, keep it coming!

  • Eddie

    I spit coffee onto my keyboard at work just now when I got to the part about chasing a squirrel on crack. This is the best (and most truthful) checklist ever. 🙂

  • NovelTeaMommy

    Add in something about your body NEVER being yours again (for da momma’s of course) and you’re good to go. Got that publisher hook up yet? 😉

  • Mad Woman behind the Blog

    I was prepared for infancy but 3 year olds? Just shoot me.
    And stupid me, I went and did it again. Damn you delicious babies!

    Seriously Babycenter, WTF?

    And why did no one tell me about what happens to my boobs? Women, that was your greatest deceit! Bitches.

    No, I’m not bitter.

    BTW, Love you!
    Signed a stalker.

  • Jennifer

    “In restaurants, I like to walk around every four minutes and eat my food standing up while chasing a squirrel on crack.” Genius.

  • christina martinez

    Ha! #18, story of my life! I’m glad I’m not alone

  • Kimmie

    You are so spot-on it’s crazy. Keep it coming! 🙂

  • Lily

    This is hysterical! I thank God that my siblings were so much younger than me. Permanent birth control. That and all my friends that magically disappear from Facebook when baby is 4 months old.

  • Marisa

    I was just discussing #20 in great detail with another mommy today. This is a great list! You are hilarious!

  • Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama

    Oh yeah! This is great stuff! My personal favorite part of parenting is the actual getting shit on part. Especially on my face. Yeah. Super sweet. A mouthful of runny crap. In my mouth and eyes. Beautiful. Ahhh the perks of motherhood. Thanks for a laugh!

  • dusty earth mother

    #16 made me laugh out loud. Congrats on your VOTY!

  • christie tate

    Love this post!! So true. Every word. COngrats on your VOTY honor!! Will you be at the conference? I will be there. I am also honored in the category of humor. Can you tell me what we are supposed to wear? Great post, great blog. Congrats!

  • Tricia

    So very true. So much so that I decided to go two for the price of one. And then when the twins were 11 days old I bought a MomMobile. Because that is way cooler than the Mustang convertible I really wanted. The nice dealer man asked me what color interior I wanted. “Whatever color is best accented with Cheerios.”

  • Selina Rupers

    Can’t….. breathe….. laughing…. too…. hard!!!!!!! AHAHAHAHA!!

  • Rebecca Hayhurst

    It doesn’t matter how many times I read this one, I still laugh out loud. Definitely my favorite!
    Love the blog and all your words of wisdom/mayhem.
    Also, trying not to stalk you even though my sister said you wouldn’t mind.
    -Rebecca (JoHannah’s sis)

  • Sofia

    You are fucking hysterical. Still laughing. Thank you!

  • SauvBlancMom

    I am dying here….I wish I had read this pre-kid!!

  • Lucy

    I already felt shit and depressed enough about being pregnant and having to somehow raise a human all alone. Is there literally nothing good about it? I’m legit wanting to know. Anyone?!

    • CorinnesMommy

      There are definitely good things. But the books & baby sites usually tell you only those good things. There as many bad parts as there are good parts. In my case, there are probably more bad parts as my daughter is autistic among other things. Don’t worry too much as I promise you it’s all completely worth it in the end.

    • Hope

      There’s definitely good stuff, but it takes a while to notice sometimes. Kids are disgusting, beautiful, sweet, bossy, retarded, wise, psychopathic, adorable, obnoxious, loud, embarrassing, loving, and crazy little fuckers.(Several of these several times a day) Over long periods of time, you start to notice the good outweigh the bad.

    • Mel

      My son took us by surprise in my last year of grad school- I never wanted kids. I cried and my husband was giddy and excited. Now, my son is one of my favorite people ever, even at 2 1/2 years old. We decided to do it again and have a 7 month old and even with my tits halfway to my knees I haven’t regretted a single moment of having kids (even when I wasn’t ready). That said, 100% of the checklist above is true!

  • Ana

    This is the funniest thing I’ve read all day. Kids, man. They’re just going to have to take me by surprise, because I’ll never be ready

  • Lee Anne

    All day. That’s how much time I could spend here. For weeks.
    I could have, and wanted to, write these posts. Thank you!

    – Sent over by Maddy Walsh and never want to leave…

  • Sarah

    In restaurants, I like to walk around every four minutes and eat my food standing up while chasing a squirrel on crack. funniest thing ever. literally started crying :’D I work at T.G.I Friday’s as a door host so I see this all the time where the mum and dads have to walk them round the restaurant like 100 times in hopes that after they have seen everything that they will sit and eat there food.

    T.G.I Fridays is the worst place to take your kids in the sense that you can’t keep them still. There are so many things to do there and not to mention all the toys, badges and stickers all over the walls. Your kid will think they are in a massive play house.

    Not to mention the staff are amazing and love kids so they become your kids best friend and We quite often have kids chasing after the waiter’s and waitress’s askin for ballons and stickers.

  • Rose

    I am 14 weeks pregnant and I have been beyond scared just thinking that Ill be a mother in 6months but your blogs honestly give me light and think that “Hey, maybe I can do this!”
    Thank you so being completely honestly and just so damn funny!

  • Rin

    THIS POST. Ftw.

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