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inspired by the ladies who lunched at mccalister's when I was there friday.

here's the scenario: your friend has a baby. you want to get her out of the house so you invite her to lunch. that's nice of you, really it is... give her a chance to feel like she could be normal again. I encourage this.

her baby is too little for a high chair so she's holding her baby and eating a salad. this means she can't eat quite as fast as you.

you finish your lunch first.

NOW IS WHERE YOU'RE SUPPOSED TO OFFER TO HOLD THE BABY.

not sit looking bored at your empty plate while she's one-hand eating a salad with her face three feet from the table because there's a baby between her and her lunch and she's trying not to drop lettuce on the baby.

and an epilogue... inspired by something that happened to me in 2010... please try to let her enjoy a nice lunch? she's been on maternity leave, you're one of the three adults she's gotten to talk with in the last two months, she got dressed and showered which is a big deal.

I had some ladies invite me out, since I'm that kind of mom I noticed when they were done eating and said "here hold this?" so I wouldn't do the one-hand baby thing, and then one of them seriously said to me, "She's grabbing my clothes, shovel it in, mom!" just to make it clear that my pesky decision to get pregnant, have the baby and then accept a lunch invitation should be appropriately punished. you're a mom now, you don't deserve a nice lunch, get it?

then don't invite me out to rub it in! I didn't tell you to come to my house and babysit, don't ask me to come entertain you and assure me that you'd LOVE to see cute baby and then shun us all the second you decide you're done.

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Comments

( 20 comments — Leave a comment )
shutterbug
Sep. 13th, 2015 01:50 pm (UTC)
How inconsiderate! When my friend was a new mom, we went out to eat and had steak. And of course, as the food comes out, her baby wants to nurse. So she started nursing, and I cut her steak for her. That's right.
excentric397
Sep. 13th, 2015 02:58 pm (UTC)
What on earth is a 'hair chair'? Haven't had any babies in some time, so have never heard of this. Or is it some kind of secret code for something everyone but me knows about? What is it???? :)
spacefem
Sep. 13th, 2015 03:53 pm (UTC)
oops, that was a typo of "high chair".

but when I hear "hair chair", it makes me think of the 2006 SNL nuni skit with natalie portman that's pretty damn awesome:
http://badnoodles.tumblr.com/post/2565921333
excentric397
Sep. 13th, 2015 06:42 pm (UTC)
Thank goodness. All sorts of things were going through my mind.
The vid will not play without excessive stuttering on my not great laptop.
lepid0ptera
Sep. 13th, 2015 04:13 pm (UTC)
In my experience people who don't have children seem to think that it's perfectly acceptable for parents' lives to be completely shitty because "you chose this!". Only parents seem to think it's important for parents to get support.
spacefem
Sep. 13th, 2015 10:53 pm (UTC)
that's almost kinda fine with me, if they just want to keep their distance and leave me alone. friends are always getting different interests and going their own way.

what irks me is when they want to do the halfway thing... keep inviting me to things but say "get a sitter!" or invite me out but act like my kid is just gross - basically make me feel bad about having a kid or just wish that I was like THEM and still childless. bad friend, there!
asher63
Sep. 13th, 2015 04:56 pm (UTC)
What is the matter with people.

* shakes head and sighs *
aerrin
Sep. 13th, 2015 05:54 pm (UTC)
One of the best things ever is that we go out to eat with my parents once a week, and EVERY SINGLE TIME since my son was born 5 and a half months ago, my mother holds him the entire time if he requires holding (he'll usually sit in his carseat while we eat now) AND changes any diapers that come up while we're there.

It's such a small thing, but gosh it was amazing to get to eat out once a week without having to worry about shuffling a baby.
smittenbyu
Sep. 13th, 2015 06:25 pm (UTC)
I absolutely love holding babies while mommies eat.Always have. Even before I was a mom. It's such a common thing to do in India, where even the waiter will offer to hold your baby/child.... heck the staff will fight over wanting to serve your table for it! Sometimes am happy to offer strangers too, but they might find me weird - which is sad, really. Maybe it's a cultural thing.

I do know some moms get nervous because their babies have stranger anxiety and cry even more making situation worse. I don't know. I don't mind. It takes a little more "work" in distracting the baby - go for a walk about the table whatever. And then they feel guilty that I had to do "work". bah. I absolutely love it.

The other day a mom was handling three kids under 5 - a baby in stroller, a 5 year old boy and a 3 year old girl. She was riding the metro and trying to go down the escalator. I gently took the hand of the 3 year old after getting a yes from her mom I can help and we made it through. Oh the relief on her face was so visible. Takes a village. We need our village.

So next time, said adults with no babies complain about their work should be shunned. After all they chose their work line. really.
(Deleted comment)
browngirl
Sep. 14th, 2015 03:58 am (UTC)
I was going to write a comment much like yours but not as awesome. Go you for helping that little girl, and being brave enough to ask her mom! And hooray for babies! I love holding babies.
smittenbyu
Sep. 14th, 2015 12:58 pm (UTC)
Someone did that for me here in DC. Little things. I even forget what that was but I don't forget the big relief I felt. I am now just paying forward. In one occasion a man helped in some small way, forget, but when I thanked him he got annoyed I was thanking him and he said, "please don't thank me! This is what we need to do! It's a village! It's a village!" And it hit me and now I completely understand what he means.
tabloidscully
Sep. 15th, 2015 07:15 am (UTC)
The village thing is definitely a struggle for a lot of moms. I was at Costco a while back and a poor mom was absolutely overrun. She was practically having kids fall out of her ears and there was dropped pizza to boot as she balanced trying to fill soda cups. I approached her and asked, "Mama, can I help you?" and she actually shouted at me, "NO. I AM FINE. I DON'T NEED YOUR HELP," even as at least two of her kids were crying about their pizzas and she spilled soda. I felt bad for her, but I also get the need to appear invincible. Still, a sad situation.
smittenbyu
Sep. 15th, 2015 12:58 pm (UTC)
completely so! Probably the mom was not in her most sanest moment... I know I nearly snapped at people offering help. Just the state of mind you are in not necessarily mad at them for offering too. But even that offer to help sometimes does help to snap out of it. I don't know. I have been refused help and that's fine. I have also refused help since I was fine, it was just momentary struggle but nice to know you are not alone.

You never know. You probably caught her completely off-guard when she didn't expect it and maybe realize how it would be ok to take help and she might next time. Or some people yeah, just need to be seen as invincible!
sandokai
Sep. 13th, 2015 08:20 pm (UTC)
While I see your point, some people aren't good at holding babies and feel weird about it, especially if they haven't had one. THey may still care about you though and want to take you out to lunch... I did not like holding other people's babies before I had one...
tabloidscully
Sep. 15th, 2015 07:11 am (UTC)
This. I have a baby, but I never ask anyone if I can hold theirs because I feel it puts undue pressure on them. I wasn't wild about letting anyone hold my daughter when she was in baby-form, because reasons. And whenever anyone asked and I said no, I was almost always guaranteed to get attitude about it. So as much as I may want to hold someone else's child, I wait for them to offer. It's not out of spite for me; it's truly out of wanting to respect their boundaries. So many women compromise on that, for fear of being rude. It's a no-win, really.
call_me_katya
Sep. 13th, 2015 08:57 pm (UTC)
Well gosh, this is genuinely a completely new perspective for me. I admit I don't have any close friends with babies, but it would never occur to me that they would want me to hold the child. I would never presume being allowed to hold the child! If I was specifically asked to, I would [with some trepidation as I see babies very rarely] but if I invited a friend out I genuinely wouldn't think. I wouldn't mean it as punishment or shunning. I guess I wouldn't have seen it as a factor.
mrs_dragon
Sep. 15th, 2015 03:03 am (UTC)
Yup. I don't know if it would have occurred to me. Or maybe it would, but I wouldn't be sure if that was helpful or obnoxious. I try to let my friends with kids know that it's okay to bring kids to events but they rarely do. I'm not sure if the logistics just get too hard or if they prefer a break from the kids or if they think I'm being overly optimistic and won't have anything for the kids and they'll end of chasing them all night...but it goes both ways, if I know kids are coming and what ages, I can make accommodations. But I can't really do that in advance when my friends have kids all over the map.
kycoo
Sep. 13th, 2015 09:52 pm (UTC)
As someone who doesn't really like babies (and has little to no experience holding babies), this post is quite an eye-opener for me. Something to keep in mind for the future, when my friends start having babies, I guess.
astrogeek01
Sep. 14th, 2015 03:08 pm (UTC)
Now that mine is big enough, I am happy to hold babies after I'm done! I still don't really like babies much but that's ok, if I can give a little relief to mom & dad so they can eat! I totally did that labor day weekend for some friends visiting. They looked surprised (& delighted) every time I (or my husband) took the baby so they could just be.

Love the story by smittenbyu that is excellent. People were so helpful with me when I was trying to get through an airport with the wee one, I think it's great to offer help whenever you can. Sometimes people say no, but that's all right too, sometimes you just wanna show the world you can. But sometimes you just really need some help, and that's ok.
( 20 comments — Leave a comment )

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