I’ve noticed recently we’ve started saying “no” to the baby. I think that means times might be changing pretty soon.
So far, her major life-achievement (apart from successfully exiting my wife) was the discovery that she can crawl, and this has been fairly trauma-free (bar the odd hilarious face-plant).
But the knowledge that she can travel seems to have kicked off a vicious circle – she now knows there are things it is worth travelling towards (mainly wires, houseplants and dirty shoes) – which means she is aware of the concept of wanting something. And this is precipitating a cascade of new wants, which we have to say no to.
“No sweetie, the pooey nappy does not go in the mouth”
“No, love, flowers aren’t edible”
“No love, that bag of climbing chalk is not full of juice…”
I suppose this is the beginning of true learning. Sometimes, I’m tempted to let her learn by her mistakes, but for the first time, I’m finding myself having to think about my parenting style. I think it might have to change.
Let me start by saying that my parenting style is perfectly (yes, i’m using that word) suited to small babies, but possibly entirely inappropriate for babies who can make choices, and also, crucially, understand language. Basically thus far, I have treated her as an object of amusement (see gallery below). I might get away with this a bit longer but it’s the fact that she might start understanding the rubbish that comes out of my mouth that I’m most fearful of now. Cos that’s gonna start to happen soon.
I’m going to have to stop with the off the cuff nicknames – (Fatima Shitbread, Spongebob Shitpants etc) the graphic foul mouthed concepts I have developed to entertain myself during nappy-changes (Kormagedden, the clunge-gunge-o-meter,) and the stream of consciousness gibberish descriptions of everything we see around us.
This leaves me with basically nothing to say to her.