I turned 40 a week ago.
I know this might come across like I am asking for some sort of condolences, or perhaps like I’m shedding a tear over it, but I’m not. Fact is, I’m actually somewhat enjoying this age, even a little surprised that I managed to keep myself alive and fairly well intact thus far.
My children are all fairly capable of being unsupervised, keep their messes contained to the black holes they call bedrooms, can manage to tell me if they need something from me, and are pretty much at the ages where they really don’t want to actually be around me. Basically, it’s a win-win situation. And I am actually particularly fond of the random strands of silver starting to pop up in the center part of my hair. It’s kind of a comfortable place to be in life.
When I’m feeling so wonderful about this era in life, I scroll through Facebook to see what old friends from high school are up to, and am astonished to see pregnancy announcements and baby showers…. I’m all for people living their lives on their own terms but I can’t even imagine starting over, or just starting, with babies at this point. But hey, whatever floats your boat!
- Bath Thermometers. Seriously, most of these things come in the form of some floating toy, like a duck, that sit in the bath water. By the time you check the temperature on it, it’s almost certain that you have put your hand in the water. Soooo….. you pretty much know if it’s too hot or cold right?
- Wipes Warmers. I’m not really sure when these became a great idea. But I can assure you in all of the years that I spent wiping butts with these things, not once did I have a baby scream out, “Seriously woman, that wipe is FREEZING! What are you trying to do?”
- Baby Shoes. Newsflash: Babies don’t walk. You WILL spend many valuable hours searching for that lost shoe. Especially when you spend a hundred dollars on baby J’s or Sperrys. Just don’t.
- Expensive Jogging Strolers. Not ONCE, not a single freaking time in raising my children, did I think, “It would be really awesome if I could go for a jog, but I just don’t think this stroller is gonna cut it.”
- Baby Bottle Makers- machines similar to coffee machines that make bottles at the perfect temp. I’m gonna do my damndest not to plug any products, because I certainly don’t intend to, and let’s be honest, nobody is paying me. But do we really need an automatic bottle maker to dispense the perfect bottle? I’ve thrown together bottles with a formula can and a bottle of water, at room temperature *gasp*, and my baby did not complain. Not even once. Even drank the whole bottle.
- Baby Bathtubs. I’m just going to assume everyone lives in a place that has a sink. Nuff said.
- Baby Food Makers. Back in my day we called those blenders.
- Diaper Genies. Also later referred to as ‘What is that horrible smell?!’ and ‘Omg take it outside!’ Have an empty grocery bag? Place dirty diaper inside, tie in a knot, take to the outside trash can. Problem solved.
- Peepee Teepees. Look. I’m a boy mom. I get it. I’ve been peed on. Once. Then I discovered that changing a baby boy’s diaper is an art that relies on timing, fast reflexes, and if all else fails, a baby wipe over that sophisticated water pistol. And I don’t have to wash it afterwards.
- Any wipe that’s labeled as special use. Listen up, booger wipes are wet wipes with a green booger on the label. That is all.
- Bassinets. Save your money and put the baby right into its crib. You’ll need that money for diapers instead, because babies are poop factories. Literally.
- Baby cam. People are spending hundreds of dollars on cameras to watch their baby sleep. I promise you, that baby isn’t going to jump up and do a cute little dance, or host a crib party if you aren’t looking. When the baby wakes up, they’re going to let you know when your presence is required. If you wanna watch the kid sleep, go sit in the room.
- Teething Toys. Definitely not trying to compare your precious bundle to an animal by any means, but have you ever noticed that puppies will chew everything they’re NOT supposed to. Yeah, it’s like that.
- Changing Tabled. What a waste of space. If you own a blanket, and have a floor or a bed, then voila! You have a changing table. One that your kid won’t fall off of one day.
- Brand Name Clothing. You won’t even get a chance to whisper, “why yes, it IS Dolce & Gabanna” before your child pukes on it, poops on it, or grows out of it.
- Knee Pads for crawling babies. Babies are designed to crawl. They don’t have kneecaps. I have yet to see a baby refuse to crawl because they didn’t have kneepads.
On a positive note, I can definitely get behind some products I’ve seen, like a baby wrap that looks like a tortilla, booties that look like tacos, a mermaid tail for a baby, and a mustache pacifier. All of these seem like perfectly legitimate reasons to waste a little money.
When your kid hits their teen years, they are not going to remember or be permanently damaged by the fact that you didn’t have all this crap. They might hate you for all kinds of really dumb teenage reasons, but this won’t be one of them. And in those years, you’ll actually appreciate the silent treatment sometimes.