I don’t really like children and babies.
There. I said it.
I will now wait patiently while the majority of you rain a torrent of questions and/or abuse down on my head………
“Ah, but they’re so cute!” “How can you not like babies?!” “But you’ve got two grown up children, how did you cope?” “I think people who don’t like babies are miserable.” “You’re like the Wicked Witch of the West.” “I’m going to start calling you the Child Catcher.”
……..finished? Good, then I’ll expand on that statement – I don’t really like wailing, nagging, spoiled children, and the sound of babies screaming causes me actual, physical pain.
This wasn’t always the case: up until my late thirties I was fine around children, I even volunteered at my local school. So what happened to make me avoid family friendly restaurants like the plague? It’s quite simple really; I lost the knack of tuning out. There was a time when I could be surrounded by excited, screaming children and not really hear them. I could sit at a table with friends and have a good old chinwag, oblivious to the fact that I was sitting next to a ball pool stuffed full of toddlers. I’m not sure when I actually lost this gift (and, believe me, it is a gift), maybe it dripped away as my children got older and I had no need to visit the UK equivalent of Chucky Cheese.
And baby makes three
So it was with great trepidation that I awaited the arrival of our weekend guests — and their seven month old baby. How would I cope? Would they be offended if I didn’t really take to their little bundle? Could I cope with a screaming baby, or would my old war wound flare up? Well I say war wound, what I actually mean is my excruciatingly sensitive ear drum – the result of a really nasty ear infection.
Their evening arrival was filled with a flurry of boot emptying, the assembly of more baby equipment than a branch of Mothercare and the deposit of a sleeping baby into her travel cot. All of which was carried out with military precision. We then spent a very enjoyable, baby-free evening catching up and having a good old natter.
Then the morning came, and along with it came the deposit onto my lap of the first baby I have held in years. I looked at her and tried to communicate telepathically, “Please don’t cry!” She looked at me in a kind of I’m not sure about you way, studied me for a while, blew an enormous raspberry in my face and grinned. And through glasses wet with droplets of baby spray, I looked at that huge grin and was hooked.
The weekend was filled with raspberries, baby nomming (take one baby, place your chin against baby’s neck and make nom, nom, nom noises. They love the noise and your chin tickles the baby, win win) and a visit to Yorkshire Sculpture Park. Hence the pics above, I don’t just throw these posts together; there’s method in my madness don’t you know 🙂
So have I changed my mind? Do I now love babies? Our little visitor certainly thawed my frosty ‘I don’t like children’ heart. Just a little mind you; I still don’t think I could cope with wailing, nagging, spoiled ankle biters running around me and demanding attention. But raspberries and baby nomming – I can’t wait for more!