It is Easter holidays in France at the moment so the 3 of us set off to IKEA to pick up some bits and bobs – as you do, we stopped by the cafe to have some lunch. I am now home and still traumatised by what I saw. I was good, really good. I didn’t say anything to anyone, I even stared at the floor so I didn’t run the risk of offending anyone with my horrified looks. As a form of therapy I have decided to share my experience and feelings in the form of a letter to the people I encountered:
1. To the father who was trying to feed his 3 year old in the play area while he stood there and cried: Your son had crapped his pants, he needed changing, not to be spoon fed some more green beans. The whole restaurant could smell it, couldn’t you? Could you eat with crap in your pants?
2. To the parent’s who’s 15m old son was crying inconsolably (and made BiP cry): Your son is hungry, give him some of those beans or fries on your plate while you wait to pay. He doesn’t want that rubber dummy/pacifier which is why he is spitting it out and crying louder.
3. To the mother who looked shocked when her 4m old baby girl started coughing whilst being fed a carrot puree: Your baby is lying down! She cannot swallow safely. She is too young to eat but if you must feed her at least keep her airways open. Can you eat lying down? I can’t.
4. To the grandmother who commented how BiP was the same age as her granddaughter yet couldn’t walk: Y0ur granddaughter is wearing shoes that are too small for her. No wonder she can’t stand. Last time I checked small feet in France weren’t considered to be anything special. Take her shoes off and let her explore.
5. To all the parents who gave us funny looks because BiP was doing her Baby-Led Weaning thing and I then breastfed her: We are obviously NOT French!
Today was a moment of self-realisation – I thought I was a very easy going mother, each to their own and all that jazz – I am not that cool chilled out mother I thought I was. I’m ok with that. I think.