Toddler Tip #2: Don’t Judge!
I have an admission to make… I have judged other parents. And lets be honest, we all have. My husband and I sat at many a cafe pre-baby and even pre-toddler, watching kids engrossed in an iPad while their parents had a coffee and a chat, and we’ve passed smirky looks at each other, thinking “We’d NEVER do that, our baby won’t need an iPad to keep him occupied, he’ll just be happy to sit quietly while we all have our cosy Sunday morning cafe breakfast”.
We always had such a nice time going out to cafes, and doing things together with a baby that sat still and was happy looking at the same book for 20 minutes, that we never felt we needed other distractions so that we could relax.
Then he turned 1.
I fully understand now where those parents were coming from. Especially since we don’t have anyone to babysit Bubba, when we go out to dinner, Bubba comes along – & without our new friend ‘iPad’, things can go pear shaped pretty quickly…. if meals take too long, climbing on and off chairs (most places here are sans highchair!), running around the table, not wanting to sit on our laps and play with the one toy I may have found at the bottom of my bag, screeching at the top of his lungs, spilling water on the table… you get the picture. It’s funny for a while…. then it’s just not.
He fell asleep at husband’s work christmas party courtesy of The Wiggles & iPad, and when meeting a new friend for coffee last week, without iPad we would have been there 20 minutes instead of 2hours!
For parents that were so adament about not having an “i-baby”… it’s now become: “Hi, my name is Jacki & I have an i-baby”.
Yes, I’ve learnt not to judge other parents (*cough* ..as much.. *cough*), as I’m sure that other people judge me.
For example, I would never judge anyone who uses a ‘leash’ for their toddler — yep, I understand that one after travelling through airports alone; Seeing a Toddler eating dirt or something he dropped earlier on the ground? Don’t stare at me, thats resourceful! Carrying a screaming toddler over your shoulder while pushing a pram through the shopping mall? Would you like to help me carry him? Toddler falling flat on his face on the street, and me saying “Come on, get up!” instead of picking him up to see if he’s ok? Yep, I’ve seen the stares. Toddler hitting his head at a cafe, and me saying “its fine he hits it all the time”… That gets some strange looks too.
I’m not saying I’ve become totally non-judgemental, but you never know what kind of day a parent is having, so remember that next time you see me licking the leftover croissant off my sons hands when I forget the baby wipes.