You think you can handle it but you’re never prepared, and each day is a new challenge just sittin there smilin at you saying, “bring it, old man.” So you try to beat the system by learning ahead of time (a book, advice etc), but it’s futile: the kids are doing the same thing! They’re watching you. They’re comparing notes at school. Make one mistake and they’re going to exploit that until you’re on your knees praying for their compliance.
Maybe you figure some things out and you’re on top for a minute. You stop and take a breath, maybe use that moment to try to be ready. Wait, you’re not the only parent here… The kid has another one! And that parent wants to have a say in how badly you screw up. They have their own crazy parenting ideas and they’re going to try to get you to go along with them. Don’t think that they’re not going to use the kid as bait or guilt. When the kid screws up it is going to be on you, pal. If the kid does well it won’t be because of you, it will be the little darling’s own achievement, thanks to mom.
The game is rigged, and you’re going to allow it because you love the little fart knockers more than you love life itself. You’re going to wish you knew what you were getting into and you’re never going to take it back nor give up.
You’re insane, as required to parent.