Five things I really shouldn’t be surprised by

A father and daughter pretending to be surprised.

Despite being a dad of three and with eight years’ parenting under my belt, I feel my capacity for being surprised should be dwindling. And yet it’s not. I often catch myself incredulous about some of the most basic of occurrences. Here are five things I really shouldn’t be surprised by anymore.

The passing of time

Before kids were on the scene, the years actually felt like years. Some of them even felt like the end of the final Lord of the Rings film. But since oldest arrived eight years ago, the time has flown by.

Yes, it’s a cliché but I can’t believe eight years have elapsed since that surreal night in July 2010. Sure, loads has happened since then and I’ve changed a lot, but it really doesn’t seem very long ago at all.

Kids’ memories

I have a pretty good memory so I really shouldn’t be taken aback by this. But all three of my kids remember things that I thought – and sometimes hoped – they would forget.

My sons can’t tell you what they did at school on any given day but retain details of my parenting fails from when they were toddlers. I said “Oh bollocks!” in front of them once. Once, dammit!

Occasional acts of genius

I think I’m allowed to use the word ‘genius’ here as lots of people accused me of being such last week. To cut a long story short, I had promised oldest birthday candles that spelt his name, the shop didn’t have his in stock and I improvised.

I used to be quite a creative problem solver before becoming a parent but am so tired and, therefore, slow-witted these days. It’s a pleasant surprise that I’ve still got it. Even if it’s only now and then!

Bread and milk

This isn’t to say I’m surprised by the existence of these kitchen essentials, you understand. It’s the frequency with which we have to buy them. I remember loaves lasting up to a week and milk actually starting to turn because we weren’t using it quickly enough.

Ah, food waste nostalgia. There are no such problems now, of course. We literally drink gallons of milk every week. Meanwhile, we need to stop being afraid of our as-yet untouched breadmaker.

The accumulation of stuff

It’s a good thing that we discovered Swedish death cleaning this year. As, otherwise, certain rooms in our house would be uninhabitable by now. It’s amazing how much stuff you can accumulate with kids around.

However quickly we get rid of clutter, it still gathers at an alarming rate. I have genuinely no idea how it does either.

It can’t be just me who is bewildered by the minutiae of family life can it? Are you ever surprised by small things that you shouldn’t be?

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