Murphy’s Law of Parenting: Anything that Can Go Wrong, Will


Murphy’s Law is an adage that anything that can go wrong will go wrong.

Personally, I think this is the perfect way to describe parenting. For the past seven years, my frenemy Murphy has struck more times than I can count. Parenting, if nothing else, has been an extremely humbling experience for me. If there is one time where whatever can go wrong will go wrong, it is when raising these tiny human beings.

Therefore, I present to you my Murphy’s Law of parenting.

#1 – The phone call.

You see your kids quietly playing together, and you think to yourself, perfect I can sneak away for ten minutes and get this quick phone call in. All is calm, until the minute the person on the other end of the phone picks up and says, “Hello.” As soon as this happens, your two kids, who have been peacefully playing for the last five minutes, decide it is time to start a full on WWF wrestling match. Which results in one of two options, you stepping outside and hoping no serious injuries occur, or hanging up the phone and trying again later.

# 2- Fine motor skills.

You have to bring your three year-old into the public bathroom with you to keep her safe while you respond to nature’s call, and just as you pull down your pants, you watch your little angel open the door. That same toddler who doesn’t have the fine motor skills to open up a go-gurt or zip their own jacket somehow has the magic ability to unlock a public bathroom door. Hello, all of JFK Airport.

Looking out airplane window

#3 – Cheerios.

I believe there is a G.P.S. planted into the bottom of every toddler’s foot. Its sole purpose is to find the only remaining Cheerio and step on it, crushing it into a thousand tiny pieces. Seriously, how does one piece of cereal make such a big mess?

#4 – Swearing.

From time to time, I let a little curse word slip out of my mouth. I try to keep my language G-rated, but sometimes, like when your phone gets accidentally dropped into the toilet, you really have no choice but to let out your favorite four letter word. Of course, the day after this incident, I received a report from my child’s after school provider that my child openly shared to his class the newest word in his vocabulary.

#5 – Stomach bug.

Have an important work event, maybe your first date in six months, or a girls weekend planned? Inevitably, Murphy’s Law will strike by giving your kids a wonderful twenty four hour stomach bug forcing you to cancel your plans.

#6 – Spare change of clothes.

Even though you have had the same spare outfit in the diaper bag for over a year and it has never been used, somehow you forget to bring the spare change of clothes with you. Maybe you left it in the car while you went to a walk, or to run into the store, or you accidentally left your diaper bag on your kitchen counter… this will be the one time that you absolutely need that spare change of clothes.

#7 – Assumptions.

Yes, we all know the expression about assumptions, and Murphy is a master at making sure your children take full advantage of this phrase. Maybe you assume that you don’t need to bring an extra diaper along because your child is pretty regular at night time and they have a full blow out in the middle of the day, or maybe you assume that your child hates carrots only to find out that they gobble them down like Halloween candy at daycare, or maybe you assume that your child would never do X. Yes, Murphy is exceptionally ingenious when it comes to assumptions.

#8 – Time.

You are running late again so Murphy will make sure that you will not make it on time. Sometimes, it happens in the form of a toddler hiding car keys, a baby blowing out the diaper the minute they get into the car seat, or dead car battery due to a car door that wasn’t fully shut the night before. Whatever the case may be, Murphy will make sure punctuality will no longer be your forte.

Swirled clock

#9 – Family memories.

You think, oh, I’m going to take my kids to the state fair, an amusement park, Maple Street pool, or whatever fun family activity. You spend an absolute fortune on making this event possible, and you are absolutely giddy about providing a fun day out for your family. Inevitably Murphy will strike, making sure that at least one of your kids melts down over the smallest of infractions.

family photo at granby zoo

#10 – Your one hour of peace.

Your kids are finally asleep, you have had a glass of wine, and things are finally winding down. It is that time of night for you to turn on your favorite trashy T.V. show and turn your brain off. You are enjoying spending some quality time with the Real Housewives of New York and of course, Murphy’s Law strikes one last time waking up your little darling, and completely ruining your daily hour of sanity.

There you have it, the ten times Murphy is most likely to strike when it comes to parenting! I’m sure there are many other times that Murphy’s Law strikes during your day that I have missed. Do you have an example of this? Share it with me, as I always enjoy a good laugh when it comes to raising these tiny human beings of ours!  


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