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How to Prepare for Motherhood in 17 Simple Steps

So you think you're ready for a baby, do you?

Ready for the physical demands? The mental endurance? The mind-numbing effect of sleep deprivation? As with anything challenging, it all starts with some solid preparation. Luckily, with these 17 easy steps, you'll be ahead of the game:

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1. Set your alarm to be the sound of wailing sirens.

2. When the alarm goes off, get out of bed and rock a 5-pound bag of potatoes for 17 minutes. Fall back to sleep.

3. Repeat every two hours for the next three months. Do not complain.

4. Limit your showers to once every four days.

5. When you do shower, set a timer for three minutes. Shower in an alert panic.

All of the physical and mental prepping is meaningless without the emotional connection of motherhood.

6. Record the sound of a baby crying. Hit "play" every time you sit down to eat dinner.

7. When eating at a restaurant, shovel in as much food as possible in three bites and ask for the check.

8. Invite your friend over; catch up in 10-second blocks of conversation. Barely make eye contact.

9. Get ready for work. Spill warm milk down your back. Repeat two times.

10. Stuff random items into two big bags; carry them everywhere you go.

11. Dump out every drawer in your house; pick it all up.

12. Spend two hours cooking your favorite dinner. When it's ready, throw it on the floor. Clean it up.

13. Ask your friend to hide a pacifier somewhere in your house. Every night at 6 p.m., race to find the pacifier in 60 seconds or less.

14. Then get your friend really drunk. Practice catching her vomit.

15. Crush a bag of goldfish and grind them into your car's back seat. Fill a sippy cup with milk and stash it under the seat; forget it's there.

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16. Drive aimlessly for two hours every afternoon, only listening to a) children's music, b) baby cries or c) a mash-up of the two.

17. Actually have a baby, and realize that all of the physical and mental prepping is meaningless without the emotional connection of motherhood—without the love that makes those sleepless nights and sacrificial days bearable, memorable, even joyful.

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