I said "boob" to a Target Cashier5:00 AM
The other day I was doing my weekly (yes, weekly) shopping trip to Target. I was getting groceries, craft stuff... the works. Since we go to Target so frequently, we basically know
some of the all the cashiers. So when I got a new guy that I'd only met once before, I was kind of looking forward to the chit-chat. Mainly because men don't typically ask the same old baby questions that the women do unless they're older. And maybe that's not true for everyone, but it tends to be for me.
But not this time.
This time I was checking out and he asked if we enjoyed the Minion movie (which I was surprised he remembered), and then went on to ask about Levi (who was nestled in the sling). How old was he now, is he bigger than Michael used to be, do I like having two boys, does he ever stay in his carseat, am I always going to wear him....
Then we got to the questions that kind of get under my skin. And when I say kind of, I mean really get under my skin. More than asking about my baby-wearing preference.
"Is he a good baby?"
I waited to see if he would elaborate, so when he didn't, I asked what he meant.
"Does he sleep at night?" he smiled.
Realizing this is a stereotypical question, I took a deep breath, swallowed my rant, and answered him, "He'll sleep for a good six hours, which is pretty amazing for a two-month-old."
I started staring at my wallet, even though I had my Red Card at the ready in my hand.
"Well, I guess that's nice. Does he sleep in the crib?" He stopped scanning groceries as though he was just waiting for my answer before he could commence work.
I guess I had finally had it. Complete strangers asking me what our sleeping arrangements were, or if I breastfeed, or if we are planning to do this, that, or the other. I was so over people thinking it was their business as to how I'm raising my children.
And while all this is going on, Michael's sitting in the cart chatting away to anyone who passed, showing them his space Goldfish. I smiled at him, like somehow I was defending our family, and turned back to the cashier.
"No, we cosleep. It's so much easier. I can just roll over and give him the boob whenever he's hungry."
You know that emoji with the WIDE EYES and pinched mouth? That's the face he made. If you don't. It's something like this: o_O.
Thinking that was the end of it, I started putting bags in the cart. Part of me was ashamed, talking to a stranger like that... and the other part of me was proud. Proud that I had finally told someone just how I felt about the ridiculous questions into my personal parenting life.
But it wasn't the end of it.
"So, are you all in the bed?"
I couldn't even look at him. I was sure fire would burst from my eyes in an inexplicable manner that had never happened before. Instead, I looked at Michael.
"Hey, Goose? Who sleeps in our bed?"
He grinned, like he was over-the-moon that he knew the answer. "Mama, Michael, Levi, and Dada."
The cashier looked horrified. This time I looked at him and smiled. "It's a king sized bed. The more the merrier, right?"
He didn't say anything after that.
I checked out as quickly as I could and left with a smile, but I had mixed feelings about what I'd done.
Don't get me wrong. There are
If you ask me if I have a good baby, or if my baby is a good sleeper, than usually my answer is simple: yes. Because my baby cries when he needs me, eats when he's hungry, and sleeps as long as he can. If a complete stranger expects to be given the inside scoop, have me complain that my almost four-year-old smacked me in the face the previous night or my co-sleeping baby leaked on our sheets and I just put a towel down because I didn't want to wake the whole family to strip the bed-- then that stranger is out of his/her mind.
Because, yes, those things happen. But I still love our decision-- and that's what it is. It's our decision, my husband's and mine, as parents. And calling our baby a "good baby" is ridiculous. Because he isn't "good" to me-- he's perfect, whether he sleeps through the night or not.