Third Entry in the Diary of an Angry Baby:
My entries have been few lately, because on the whole I have been enjoying my role as a baby and growing increasingly close to my very best friend, Mommy. She is the boob to my mouth, the diaper to my bottom, the snuggle to my squirm. Without her I’m not sure I could have survived these past four months here on the outside.
Yesterday we got out of the house for awhile and visited someplace called ‘the mall.’ I saw a lot of fascinating new light fixtures, which I suspect were not the main point of interest in this new place, but the view from my stroller was quite limited. Several new people leaned in over my stroller to take a peek at me. Now, after four months of continuous contact with my mommy, I am well in tune with her and can easily pick up on her emotions. I felt her pride when the people gushed over me, and her annoyance when someone asked her if I was a boy or a girl. A short time later, I felt a sensation that was all my own: hunger. I began my usual signals of turning my head to either side and then escalated to sucking on my hands. I didn’t want to make a scene, I only wanted Mommy’s attention.
It worked of course, as my signals always do, because I am an excellent communicator and Mommy is a great listener. She brought us to a quiet corner of the mall and picked me up. I caught a glimpse of two ladies sitting on the bench a few stroller lengths away, but before I could call out to them, my view was obstructed by the delightfully familiar pattern of my nursing curtain. Mommy sometimes closes this around me when she serves my meals. I knew what was coming, so I kicked my legs and squealed with excitement. Mommy had packed my favorite lunch–she’s such a peach!
So I snuggled in and began to eat, and I heard some voices in the distance. Someone said, “That’s disgusting,” and another voice chimed in, “she should really do that somewhere else.” I had no idea what they were talking about, but I was glad I couldn’t see it, whatever it was. I wouldn’t want to get upset and lose my appetite. I snuggled closer to Mommy and felt her soft sweater against my cheek. I’m so lucky to have her looking out for me, protecting me from everything that’s disgusting in this world.
It was then that I realized something was wrong. My mommy was deeply affected by whatever was happening on the other side of my curtain. Her heart was beating faster, her skin felt warmer and she had started to sweat. I could tell that she felt angry, embarrassed and sad. I stopped eating then, so she would have the chance to move away from whatever was bothering us so much.
I didn’t see anything terrible as she loaded me back into my stroller. We rolled away quickly, in silence. She was still upset, and I was still hungry. We both cried on the way home. I don’t understand exactly what disgusting things are going on at that mall, but I certainly hope someone gets them under control before our next outing there. What good are those exquisite light fixtures, after all, if those who come to view them cannot also stop and dine in peace?
**this post was inspired by someone I care about who had this dreadful experience in her local Macy’s Department store. Let’s grow up, people, and put life in perspective. A mother feeding her child, whether it’s with breast or bottle, is acceptable in any setting. An adult recoiling at the sight of a nursing infant, and thinking his or her own comfort should somehow trump the needs of that infant, is the very epitome of disgusting.**