When Ariana was born- now hold on a second. Don’t just click away from the page because it looks like I’m about to be “one of those moms” who wants to share every icky detail of my 1000-hour labor that resulted in no fatalities (although the doctor would have been the first to go) and ended in my hatred of hospitals, doctors, popsicles and ice cubes as a whole (though I will say I had easy labors with both girls and say that epidurals are heavenly).
When Ariana was born, and we introduced her to family and friends, inevitably, the first words out of most of their mouths were something like “why do you swaddle her like that?” or “is she warm enough in that onesie?” or “I can recommend a really good pediatrician.” I would try to graciously accept their advice with a grain of salt and without too much audible teeth-clenching. There were times that I just wanted to pop them in the nose, however. I don’t believe that Tylenol is the cure-all and if I have a cranky child, I think she will be okay for that fifth of a second that I don’t rush to her side.
When Harper was born, I was much more relaxed… in some ways. I spent two days in the hospital alone with her, so I got to know her fairly well! She was a very chill baby, so when she was three weeks old and suddenly began to fuss, everyone wanted to give me unsolicited advice- “cluster feed her”, “bounce her around”, “use a swing”, etc. etc. etc. etc.
Terry will attest to the fact that I love to complain about how ridiculous everyone else is when they offer me advice on things that I already have dealt with. Do I know everything? *pause* Well… okay, maybe I don’t, but I know a lot about parenting. And I like to think that, in the 2ish years I’ve been a mom, I’ve picked up a few things. I also know my girls really well and I can tell the difference between ‘hurt cry’, ‘I don’t want to be in here any longer cry’ and ‘hungry cry’.
If Harper is standing in the play yard whining at me, it does not mean she needs to be snuggled, it means she is bored and that eventually, I’ll give in to the high-pitched wails and give her a graham cracker.
So the next time you want to ask me why-oh-why I decided to pierce the girls’ ears at just a few months old, remember that I am not afraid to ignore you. Or slap you.