Tuesday, 25 October 2016

The One Year Baby Review

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Line up mummies, form an orderly queue, come on now there are judgements to be passed and assumptions to be made about your ability to parent.

My sons' one year review just happened and I have never been made to feel more unfit to be a parent in my life. It went a little something like this:

The 'Professional': Hello, and this is..?
Me: This is _____ (I see his name on her list but whatever, I'll play along)
The 'Professional': Hello _____, mum why don't you put him on the mat so he can play and I can see him move.
Me: Sure

Child plays happily, rattling things and rolling balls. This is going well, I think, he's being adorable.

The 'Professional': Oh dear, mum remove the dummy
Me: Oh ok, he was a bit upset outside so I let him have it
The 'Professional': So you reward tantrums?
Me: No, but if he's in genuine distress I let him calm himself down with it
The 'Professional': So you do then. OK
Me: *flummoxed*
The 'Professional': (takes toy away from child, he commences screaming) So would you let him get away with a violent tantrum like this? Or is this when we pull out the dummy?

I'll stop here, it carried on in this vein for the next 30 minutes, I was floored. Am I really a terrible mother? Am I cut out for this? Did my child lose the uterus lottery for having been grown inside me?

Now I've had a cup of tea and a biscuit (ok a PACK of biscuits) I wish I could turn back the clock and lay down some truths for her.

My child is a well adjusted, sociable little boy who just so happens to be a complete arsehole from time to time. When this happens, after a long day at work, after bath time and during what should be story time but ends up being devil-child-wants-to-destroy-all-written-words time, yes, i give him the fucking dummy, I cuddle him to sleep AND I even let him sleep next to me so I don't have to get up when he wakes up crying for said dummy.

On the weekend, my husband and I go to great lengths to plan awesome activities for our son so that he can experience new things and so we can just have fun as a family. Usually, this goes swimmingly. My son will flirt with other mums, blow kisses to other children and giggle his little heart out for most of the day. Then there are the times he decides to go nuts. I hate the world, I hate the children, why are the adults looking at me, I hate my pram I want to crawl, why the fuck have you put me on the floor, new decibels of screeching are reached and guess what? I GIVE HIM HIS FUCKING DUMMY. Other people are out to have a good time and my baby is nicer on these days when I let him use it so fuck you judgy lady, my kid is fine.

The problem here is, in fact, you. You did not smile once, you snatched a toy from my sons' hand (I'm trying to teach him to not do that but thanks anyway) and I can only imagine he can feel that I am not happy in this situation. He doesn't like you because you were too rough with him, not because he is 'anti social'.

Thank you for ruining my day, but you have to go on being the miserable person that you are, alienating all those unfortunate to cross your path, but me and my son are off to the park to play and if he hurts himself or gets scared of the geese and has a meltdown, guess what I'm going to do to help him?

I hope this post has found you well and, if not, I hope it has left you better.

m_ak x

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