From the minute my girls were born, my desire to lather them up in mayo and put them in between two fluffy hoagie buns has been fierce.

I want the works, too. Lettuce, tomato, bacon. Heck, throw some avocado on there — let’s get crazy!

Just the other day, I told my oldest that I was going to pass on cake because I was planning on gobbling her up for dessert. I was kidding, but only a little. I feel like I could have kissed her up until I got bloated; I felt so in love.

I don’t want to actually eat them, obviously, but that doesn’t stop me from thinking that they would fit perfectly in a cake box with a few buttercream florets on their heads.

Before you judge me, science says I’m normal (thank God). It’s actually called dimorphous expressions — or “cute aggression” — and its purpose is to regulate my emotions. That last part actually concerns me the most, because now I’m wondering if maybe I actually would make them into a BLT without my dimorphous expressions.

I always knew that I was laying things on pretty thick, but I started to feel self-conscious when just last night, I asked my husband if he likes the way Poppy smells first thing in the morning. My eyes were glazed as if I entered a Dunkin’ Donuts at 5 a.m.

“Um, not really?” he said, like I was a freak.

Well, guess what? Science once again confirms that, although I may be a freak, I’m a pretty normal one, because a baby’s odor activates a mother’s reward circuit — located in the same area that releases dopamine. So if I talk about how delicious my baby smells and I look drugged while talking about it, don’t call Child Protective Services.

Obviously, someone knew what they were doing when they gave us so many biological rewards for loving our children. They tend to cry a lot, throw tantrums, test our patience, give us permanent eye twitches, cost a lot, poop up their back (and in the tub, car seat, on your lap, etc.), dump their cereal on the floor and wake up at 3 a.m. “just cuz.” If their resemblance to fresh pastries keeps me coming back for more, I’ll take it. I mean, if I can’t sleep, I might as well get flooded with dopamine, am I right?

So, if your babies make your list of favorite foods and that sort of troubles you, don’t worry. According to science, we’re perfectly normal.

In fact, I would argue that if you don’t want to put them in a banana split, you’re the one who’s weird.

Trust me, it’s science.

Anna Lind Thomas is a humor writer and mom to daughters Lucy and Poppy and English bulldog Bruno, wife to Rob Thomas and founder of HaHas for HooHas. She writes for momaha.com.

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