Before you had kids you swore that you wouldn't be that parent who would... and that your kids would never...
Well, when you have kids everything changes, and things you were so convinced of look very different. Suddenly your ego is pushed aside and you say, "I can't believe I became that parent who..."
Now, as parents, you look at the world differently - at the people on the street, at drivers, service providers, neighbors and even your family. Everyone has points they don't like being pressed on, but some are common to almost everyone who recently became a parent, for the first time or not.
So what things do you appreciate more since kids came into your life?
1. Forgiving or considerate neighbors
Since you became parents you appreciate your neighbors when they don't give you looks of horror because your child knocks toys on the floor which is their ceiling, or because they don't look at you like you're crazy after hearing you yell at the kids.
You also appreciate considerate neighbors like those who don't drill into the wall exactly at the baby's bedtime on the weekend, or don't throw parties every Friday night and cause so much noise that you can't put the baby to bed.
2. Delivery people who don't ring the bell
You're always happy to greet the delivery guy who brought dinner, groceries or clothes you ordered, but not when he rings the bell when the kids are in bed!
Since not everyone has kids and most people think a house can still be lively at 7:30 p.m., put a "don't ring" sticker on the bell or disable it, and they'll knock.
3. Courteous and accommodating service providers
Even at the supermarket, at the clinic and in other places when you have people who provide service faithfully, quickly and efficiently so your kids will stay patient, and also with a smile and an understanding look, your experience is much easier and pleasant.
When your kid prostrates on the supermarket floor and one of the sellers offers him candy (at his expense), or the doctor's secretary gives stickers so that kids won't cry before the appointment, you know that you've received good treatment that's really unexpected.
4. Drivers who don't honk
Before you became parents, you would honk at anyone who delayed you on the road even for a moment. Yet we know that kids change the concept of time and especially slow it down, so that even the fastest people must develop patience and understanding towards delaying factors, especially in cars.
When you put your kid in the safety seat in the car and they start fussing, and it takes a minute or two more to start driving and someone is waiting for your parking space, when you're engrossed in entertaining baby with a pacifier but the traffic light just turned green, those who don't beep impatiently are people worth appreciating.
Also, if your kids fall asleep in the car, the last thing you want is an angry driver honking which will wake up the kids.
Did you go on vacation with the kids and the hotel is great yet not accessible for strollers? You wanted to get on the bus with the baby but the driver didn't stop close to the sidewalk? Is the entrance to the clinic only via stairs?
Obviously, awareness of accessibility becomes critical with kids, and you appreciate more and more paved roads with convenient passages for strollers, straight sidewalks with unbroken stones and elevators, of course.
6. Parent and child bathrooms in shopping malls
The last point begins with a riddle: When a father goes with his daughter to the mall and she asks to pee, which bathroom should he go to? The men's or women's bathroom?
On the one hand, she is a child, on the other it's inappropriate to enter the women's bathroom with her. This is definitely a catch.
The solution is in the parent-child bathrooms that have begun to appear in malls and large shopping centers, which allow each parent and child to enter, with stalls equipped with low toilets which are more comfortable for kids.
This article was written in partnership with the JAMA parenting app.