The Test For Future Parents by author Colin Falconer comprises 14 steps to follow before you have children and was originally printed in his book "A Beginners Guide to Fatherhood" in 1992 before finding its was on to parenting blogs in the UK.
Test 1: Preparation
Women: To prepare for pregnancy
1. Put on a dressing gown and stick a beanbag down the front.
2. Leave it there.
3. After 9 months remove 5% of the beans.
Men: To prepare for children
1. Go to a local chemist, tip the contents of your wallet onto the counter and tell the pharmacist to help himself
2. Go to the supermarket. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office.
3. Go home. Pick up the newspaper and read it for the last time.
Test 2: Knowledge
Find a couple who are already parents and berate them about their methods of discipline, lack of patience, appallingly low tolerance levels and how they have allowed their children to run wild. Suggest ways in which they might improve their child's sleeping habits, toilet training, table manners and overall behaviour. Enjoy it. It will be the last time in your life that you will have all the answers.
Test 3: Nights
To discover how the nights will feel: You can kiss goodbye to precious beauty sleep as soon as you have a child You can kiss goodbye to precious beauty sleep as soon as you have a child
1. Walk around the living room from 5pm to 10pm carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 4 - 6kg, with a radio turned to static (or some other obnoxious sound) playing loudly.
2. At 10pm, put the bag down, set the alarm for midnight and go to sleep.
3. Get up at 11pm and walk the bag around the living room until 1am.
4. Set the alarm for 3am.
5. As you can't get back to sleep, get up at 2am and make a cup of tea.
6. Go to bed at 2.45am.
7. Get up again at 3am when the alarm goes off.
8. Sing songs in the dark until 4am.
9. Put the alarm on for 5am. Get up when it goes off.
10. Make breakfast. Keep this up for 5 years. LOOK CHEERFUL.
Test 4: Dressing Small Children
1. Buy a live octopus and a string bag.
2. Attempt to put the octopus into the string bag so that no arms hang out.
Time Allowed: 5 minutes.
Test 5: Cars
1. Forget the BMW. Buy a practical 5-door wagon.
2. Buy a chocolate ice cream cone and put it in the glove compartment. Leave it there.
3. Get a coin. Insert it into the CD player.
4. Take a box of chocolate biscuits; mash them into the back seat.
5. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car.
Test 6: Going for a Walk
b. Go out the front door.
c. Come back in again.
d. Go out.
e. Come back in again.
f. Go out again.
g. Walk down the front path.
h. Walk back up it.
i. Walk down it again.
j. Walk very slowly down the road for five minutes.
k. Stop, inspect minutely and ask at least 6 questions about every piece of used chewing gum, dirty tissue and dead insect along the way.
l. Retrace your steps.
m. Scream that you have had as much as you can stand until the neighbours come out and stare at you.
n. Give up and go back into the house.
You are now just about ready to try taking a small child for a walk.
Test 7: Conversations with Children
Repeat everything you say at least 5 times.
Test 8: Grocery Shopping
1. Go to the local supermarket. Take with you the nearest thing you can find to a pre-school child--a fully grown goat is excellent. If you intend to have more than one child, take more than one goat.
2. Buy your weekly groceries without letting the goat(s) out of your sight.
3. Pay for everything the goat eats or destroys.
Until you can easily accomplish this, do not even contemplate having children.
Baby Will was born prematurely at 30 weeks + 4 days. He's doing very well in the NICU, and I've started a Caring Bridge site so that you can follow our updates about him, if you wish.
Since I'll be making twice daily trips to the hospital, in addition to other baby-related duties, I'm going to take a temporary blog break until December 1st. Thanks very much for your understanding, which I sincerely appreciate. I do hope that you'll come back to join me here in a little over a month. Until then, I hope you have a very happy fall and early winter season!