parenthood is

When your son hands you a wrinkly green grape he found in the tub and you think, “How cute! He knows he shouldn’t have this so he’s handing it to me!” And then you think, “I haven’t bought green grapes in weeks. Where did he get this?” And then you remember, “We did have golden raisins yesterday…oh look, there’s another…and, oh.” And then you wash out the tub for the 48579th time.

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Finding your husband asleep on the couch at 3am. He can’t remember how he got out there.

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Witnessing the pure, unadulterated joy of a little boy who has just discovered the toilet is a throne full of water! He is armpit-deep and soaked from head to toe. Bliss.

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The resurrection of your stand-up career. Your audiences are extremely affirming.

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Waking up with a child drooling on your neck that neither of you remember bringing into bed.

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Feeding the children a dinner of Costco samples. Spending the rest of the trip arguing about everything because you haven’t slept two consecutive hours in too long and life is too expensive. Being sad that you ruined your [family] [only] date night with arguing. Buying a frozen pizza from the sample man in an attempt to salvage the evening. (it was delicious)

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Making and eating a chocolate cake after the kids go to sleep because they puked in our bed, my slipper and the shelf bra of my nursing tank today. Also because, why not? Cake is delicious.

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Looking down to see your daughter sucking the gel beads out of a water-logged disposable diaper. Awesome. Google to the rescue.

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Scoring a parking spot right next to a cart corral with a double-seat shopping cart and remembering to bring snacks because you know we’re not leaving until somebody has a melt down. Target: playdate for one. (me)

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And, most importantly: finally hearing those two beautiful words.

Mama. Papa.

Is there anything as wonderful as that?

(Evelyn whispers ‘papa’ so softly whenever he enters the room, like she can’t quite believe he’s hers. I know the feeling.)

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