"If you actually believe us when we say, 'No, no — nothing for me, thanks. I’m not hungry' or 'I only eat whole, clean, plant-based foods,' then that’s on you and you deserve to have three-quarters of your fries gone by the time you pull up to the house."

One thing I credit children for is their keen eye for an opportunity. There is no better time to find the Costco-sized bag of toilet paper and unravel it all than when their mother is on the phone catching up with her best friend from college.

During a recent small argument with her husband, Anna Lind Thomas' 3-year-old daughter "ran in waving her arms over her head like a referee with a whistle trying to break up basketball players."

"'Mommy, mommy, mommy!' she said, interrupting me at every 'But...Imma tell you...it’s not like...' At one time she even covered my mouth with her hand — a hand that smelled like peanut butter with a hint of feet, mind you. And I wanted it off my face."

"One of the most memorable times I actually knew in my heart for certain that I had no idea what I was doing was when my husband and I attempted potty training. Frankly, I’m still traumatized by the experience."

"Thoughts swirled through my head. Will there be good lighting? Can I wear a sarong? Will they care if I get a spray tan first? Should I wax? Please God tell me I can stand and won’t be sitting awkwardly in some chair trying to minimize any tummy roll ON CAMERA."

"Parenting is the most deadly serious adventure I’ve ever been on. The love is its own complex, all-encompassing ecosystem. At the same time, is it too much to ask if we all just lighten up a bit? Obviously both my girls are God’s gift to all mankind, but at the same time, one of them is in the naughty chair and the other trying to eat a crayon. It’s not that serious."

"It’s a bit cruel that the “happiest” days of our lives are too harried, insane and sleep deprived to remember," wrote Anna Lind Thomas. "We’re working our hardest to provide for our babies. We're spraying Shout on poop stains, answering important phone calls, burning dinner in the oven, mowing lawns, attending meetings and making grocery lists."

"What more do I have to sacrifice so one of my babies has some small resemblance of me? I waddled around carrying them, bore hemorrhoids for them and drank coconut water for them — and, frankly, coconut water makes me gag a little," wrote Anna Lind Thomas. "And for my sacrifice, I don’t even get an eye color? Eye shape? Hair color? Skin color? ANYTHING?"

"Before children, (my husband) was my partner, my soulmate, my best friend. Now, after our babies, I’ve subconsciously morphed him into something else; something less intimate like my husband and more detached like the help," wrote Anna Lind Thomas. "He's the tickle machine that distracts the children, the waffle maker while I jump in the shower. The paycheck. The light bulb changer. And sadly, more ominously, the dog to kick."

According to reports from the Vatican, God admits that on his seventh day of rest, he recalled he hadn’t quite “wrapped up” human development between 2 and 3 years old. Since he was already relaxing and, to be blunt, “over it,” he figured any challenges toddlers posed could be used as obstacles to sharpen the parent’s character, or at the very least practice proper anger management.

"If I let my love rule, I’d rescue her during every struggle. She wouldn’t learn or develop the skills she needs to become the woman she’s destined to be. Crawl. Walk. Run," wrote Anna Lind Thomas. "I’d be raising another Mariah Carey as she gets carried around on a chaise lounge all day by shirtless men. Not on my watch!"

"So many seasoned parents have told me “to enjoy every minute” of motherhood “because they grow up so fast.” It's a cliché I can intellectually ingest as likely true, but hard to absorb when I’m so exhausted I have my eyes held open by paper clips while trying to discern if the stain on my shirt is melted chocolate or someone else’s poop."

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