Becoming the mistakes you warn your kids about

You could’ve warned me.

I’m talking to you, Dear Reader, who has been in this parenting game longer than the few years I have.

Why did you not explain to me that becoming a parent is perfect blueprint for looking like a fool?

Why is it that the very thing I try to warn my kids not to do I end up doing myself.?

Usually, of course, right in front of their faces.

I first noticed this phenomenon taking our two girls to Washington, D.C.

Being the excellent parent I am I had planned, squeezed and crammed a year worth of activities, sites, events into a two and half day trip.

This meant we had to hit the ground running.

No room for mishaps.

“Girls,” I warned them as the plane landed, “we need to be at the White House in 24 minutes. That means we have time for one quick stop at the ladies room and then we have to run!”

They both looked at me with disappointment. “Crazy Lady came with us on this trip,” their looks seem to say.

“And whatever you do,” I warned, “Take your phones out of your back pocket. You don’t want them dropping in the potty when you go!”

This dire possibility seemed so important that I repeated it three more times between the plane and the ladies room.

We each ran into our respective stalls, and of course, you know what happened next — before I could even do what I went in there to do — I heard the dreaded, “Plop.”

I turned around to find my phone dunked in the public potty.

Germs be damned, I reached in and swooped my phone out of there.

“That was so fast, I bet I didn’t do any damage,” I lied to myself.

The truth revealed itself, as the phone part refused to work and any pictures I took at the White House were a mess.

“Why does it look it like we are in a snow storm when it’s all sunny outside?” one of my girls asked looking at the awful photos.

“Must be one of the camera filters,” I lied.

OK, so I was a fool and terrible parent.

“No trip to D.C. would be complete without a trip to the cellphone store,” I announced.

“You’re getting a new phone now?” they gave me the Crazy Lady look again.

I finally had to fess up that I had done the very thing I harped at them not to do.

You can bet this story has been repeated many times.

The “Cellphone in the Potty” story was just the beginning. I warn, “You’re going to spill something!” I spill.

“Don’t forget your house keys!”

I forget my house keys.

I even wore flip-flops to my wedding because I forgot my fancy shoes — something I warned the girls not to do.

How about you, Dear Reader: Do you, too crash into the very walls you warn your kids to avoid?

Please reply by email. See, my phone isn’t working so well.

Thank you for reading the Dayton Daily News and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.

Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Dayton Daily News. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.

Daryn Kagan is the author of “What’s Possible! 50 True Stories of People Who Dared To Dream They Could Make a Difference.” Email her at