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What I've Learned In The Last Year

A year ago today, around 10:17 a.m., Rally Baby introduced herself to the world. (A year ago tomorrow, SBN offered me a full-time position. It was an interesting 48 hours.) We have plenty to discuss within the Mizzou universe today, but forgive me for some brief self-indulgence.

Here are 10 things I've learned in the last year of being a parent:

1. There are so many worse things out there than Barney and Elmo. The Berenstain Bears, for instance. Or Caillou. Caillou is the worst. The f***ing worst.

2. And when your baby loves Elmo (or anything else) as much as mine, you'll learn to like him, too. You will have this song in your head for days, or maybe this one, or this one, or, of course, this one, and you won't necessarily feel like killing yourself. At least, not as much as you think.

3. You will own 117 baby gates. Or, at least, you better.

4. Babies. Fart. So. Much. And if you have a third-grade sense of humor (and both Mrs. Bill C. and I do), this is awesome news.

5. Teething really, really sucks.

6. Granted, I already knew this one, but Mrs. Bill C. has now learned that you can function on far less sleep than you anticipated.

7. Seriously, Caillou is the worst.

8. No matter how old you are, you will quickly come to the conclusion that going to bed at 9:30 p.m. is an absolutely fantastic idea. And maybe even 9:00 on occasion. And the idea of actually going out at night and wrecking the baby's schedule in some way will be absolutely terrifying.

9. Babies have 10 arms. I don't have scientific proof of this, but it's the only explanation.

10. Whether you are a fan of all babies or not, you are going to think yours is pretty stinking awesome. And chances are, he or she is going to think the same of you. Raising a kid is somehow both harder than you think and pretty easy. You will need double the patience that has ever been required of you, but as long as you keep showing up for work and trying to learn, you will be rewarded. Significantly. Happy birthday, Erin.