There’s nothing more irritating for your ears then the sound of a screaming baby. We have all been there, sitting on a bus, train, anywhere public and the ear-wrenching cries of an unhappy child have slapped us rudely in the ears.
Until I became a mother I was one of those people who rolled their eyes and turned my iPod up to drown out the sounds of the world, mostly annoying crying babies. But that was because I was naive and had no idea how stressful but normal it is for a baby to cry.
The other day, we took a little family trip into Kingston. My husband had to help out at an event on his university course which involved a concert of trombones. We were foolish at first thinking that Cabbit would be ok but before the concert began I had to take him outside for a change, feed and a much-needed stroll. He was getting fussy and we didn’t want him to cry through the whole thing. But we also don’t want to stop doing things just because we have a baby; we now know the limits of what we can get away with as parents.
Anyway, things went well at university despite Cabbit and I not seeing the concert. He met some new faces and even a little toddler which was a first for him. It wasn’t until we were in Kingston, half way round the shops that he decided he wasn’t happy, I can’t blame him with all of the weirdo’s about. I never realised how much the cries of a baby attract the attention of so many people. I could feel their eyes on us as if to say we were bad parents because he was crying. It angered me in a way as how dare random people make comments on something they know nothing about. You learn these things becoming a parent. That a baby cries and it’s natural. It’s there only way of communication at that age, how else are they supposed to tell you that they need changing or are too hot? Of course you have to ignore people and do what’s best for your child, which we always do. I just hate people judging by what they see; they hear a few seconds of a cry and assume that you can’t take care of you child. How do I know this? The muttering and the tutting. You hear people say “That’s an unhappy baby” or “Sounds like he needs feeding” I would love to tell these people to p*ss off and if I stuck a bottle in his mouth every time he was crying he would become obese! Crying does not always mean a baby is hungry. There are a hundred reasons why a baby could be upset. Too much noise, overtired, needs changing, too hot, too cold, wants cuddles, I could go on.
Lucky for us we were near a Mothercare which is a godsend for any parent as they have big nice changing rooms. So we popped in there and did the normal routine of changing, feeding, burping and cuddles. He calmed down a little but as soon as we left the shop Cabbit started crying again. Lucky for us we had purchased a harness in Mothercare and thought now was as a good as time as any to test it out. After about a minute of Cabbit being in it he fell asleep so we continued our little trip, praying he would stay asleep till we were home. The amount of attention my husband got from wearing the harness was madness. We were in Waterstones looking for The Giraffe And The Pelly And Me by Roald Dahl and the sales assistant was head over heels with Cabbit. People’s heads were turning and cooing as we walked past them, hypnotizing them into a bubbly, gooey-eyed squeaky rabble. We have no problem with people adoring our son it just becomes a nuisance when we are trying to get round the shops and people keep stopping us to dribble over his cuteness. As a family we have limited time together as it is with my husband being busy with university projects. The time we do get as a family is special and we like to make the most of it. I do find it amusing how a sleeping baby is admired and a crying baby is repulsive to people. I need to stop rambling and get back to my point.
After our shopping and browsing in Kingston we popped a sleeping Cabbit back in his pram as we boarded the bus home. Much safer for him to be in the pram on the bus we thought. Boy, did we have hell to pay for thinking of his safety. After about five minutes Cabbit started screaming the place down and the amount of filthy looks we got from passengers was ridiculous. He’s a baby, he is going to cry, and it’s what babies do. We felt helpless as the bus was pretty busy and it would be dangerous to get him out of his pram at only two months old on a moving vehicle. So we had to just wait it out, gently rocking him and trying to calm him with words of love. All of it useless of course. Only when we got home did he stop, which tells us he hates busses just as much as we do. Good boy!
My point is, babies cry and if someone dares to tell me I’m not a good mother because my baby starts crying I will scream in their face just as loudly as my son. I work full-time as a mother and always do what’s best by him. I wish people didn’t think badly of parents because they see a child with tears rolling down their face. Until you’re a parent it’s just a part of life you will find hard to understand until it happens to you. Until it does, just put your earphones back in and turn the volume up.