I’m kinda writing this after the fact, because I made the shocking realisation a few months ago: mine is not a Pinterest baby. Heck he’s not even a reddit baby. And that’s ok, because I’m not really a Pinterest mom.
Here are some areas in which young sir excels in doing exactly the opposite of what the glossies do:
Sophie la Giraffe
I know I’m not alone in this one. So you know that rubber giraffe that looks like a dog toy* but costs about 300 bucks? Yep, Finn was more interested in the packaging. No amount of squeaking, strategic placement or even Telament drops could get him to take to her. She’s still lying in all her natural rubber glory at the bottom of the toy drawer.
*interestingly, our niece’s bull terrier got hold of her Sophie and with a few enthusiastic canine alterations, turned her into a more ergonomnomnomically correct “Sophie de Milo”
I used to think he was the cuddliest kiddo in all the world, but it turns out he just wasn’t that good at gross motor control. Now that he’s able to push me away, he does. Usually while screeching. When we’re out, the other tots sit on mom’s lap, or gently rest a hand on her knee. Not mine. He’s off sticking his hand in the toilet.
When his dad’s in the room, however, up go the pudgy little arms for a prolonged nestle-in-the-beard. No biggie. I spend the time I’d use to feel sorry for myself coming up with embarrassing things to say when he’s a teenager. Also when he does give me some love out of nowhere it means 10 x more.
*pauses to wipe away tears of mirth* Those pictures of babies sleeping next to their mom and dad? We don’t have any. This is because we’re a family that likes their space. We’ve tried to have those delicious lazy morning naps with him, but our attempts have been traumatic for all of us.
Now that he’s mobile, we’ve had to let that dream drift away as he’s swapped uncomfortable rolling, writhing and kicking in the tenders for full-barrelled charging around the bed. It’s hard to drift off while your one-year old is exploring your nostrils or trying to leap to his doom.
When he was little, every day was Blue Steel day. The camera loved him. I could snap away and they’d all be in focus. But nowadays (and he can’t even walk yet) he’s basically just a food-covered blur. Only once every 1000 frames does he sit still. In fact, if it weren’t for my cellphone’s sports setting, and cheap data storage, we’d have an approximation of Nyan cat’s tail as the only proof he exists.
Whatever. Our dogs both adore him, and he’s fascinated by them but there’re no nestling up to Maxx or Trousers for late-afternoon naps in the sun for our boy. I don’t know about your dogs, but our hounds lick their genitals, eat poo and they shed. So we’re not wild about them being in beds or on couches.
This doesn’t stop him from sharing their water bowl or chewing their food dishes. Obviously. He cares not a jot for smelliness or filth.
It’s funny, now that we’re over the first year we have a new perspective on expectations and where we place importance. Despite the fact that we were misled by the internet (imagine the shock) and actually share our lives with a perpetually cruising, fiercely independent, cardboard-chewing child, we take a certain joy in how otherwise he is.
He’s scrappy, determined, surprising, and usually dirty; we vote him most likely to survive a nuclear holocaust and we couldn’t be prouder.