Monday, 2 June 2014

Let me comfort my kid, dammit!

Hubby, Baby and I are all smiles and rings under the eyes after a staycation of severe teething and family colds. All fit and full of bubbles now, and, of course, the weather has turned glorious again, after a week of drizzles..... 

Baby and I are back at the 'parent school' (see my series) for our parent/child group. I know, I know.... she is nuts to go back there, you say! But between religious, pseudo-developmental or nudist (non-Germans, not as aware or at-ease with public nudity, might say 'German'), diaper-free meetings on offer elsewhere, there was nothing much else to choose from that didn't either fill my head with so many questions it was about to explode, or cost a fortune. Don't get me wrong, but paying for Baby rolling around naked on a mat and having a 'Mommy chat', something I am still not sure I fully enjoy, goes a bit against my grain. 

And I want him to have a chance to interact with other babies, be in environments that don't involve just Hubby and me, so here we are. What parents don't do for their kids..... 

It is chaotic again.... what a surprise! Chaos is definitely the reigning order here. Lea, the lady in charge of our group for 5 to 8-month-olds, is not here, again. We end up in a group with a Brazilian group manager, Lisa, who I met the first time coming here. Bizarrely, or maybe, in keeping with the chaos, she isn't surrounded by her usual 0 to 6-month-olds, but fully mobile little tikes. Baby thinks this is great, peering around,and watching his 'elders' in awe, letting a girl come over to feel his curls, and grabbing himself something to chew on while watching the clambering show. 

Eventually he decides to join in and inches over to a building block. From the right, Lucas, a highly mobile 8.5-month-old lurches over to join him and lands half-on-half-off Baby. The other Mom has swooped in to get her son out of the way. I reach over to Baby, who looks around in surprise, followed by: wwaaaaahhhhhH!  

I am busy holding him, saying 'It's ok. Just a little scare.It's ok. You're ok.', i.e. the usual comforting sounds, while he registers his discontent with the situation by going through the usual quieting-wailing-quieting rhythm little ones go through when a little distressed. In the middle of this, Lisa keeps touching my knee with her hand to get my attention and saying to me and the group: 'You really shouldn't be ignoring his feelings, that he got scared. Parents tend to act like nothing has happened and you should talk to your child about their feelings, so they learn to speak about them, rather than brush them off.' The other mothers are uncomfortably shifting, I am trying to tell the other Mom not to worry, and simultaneously ignore Lisa, in order not to take her head off. 

My son is 8 months old!!! He cannot speak and I cannot talk to him about being scared! Completely apart from the fact that I wasn't ignoring him being scared, and trying to comfort him. A fat lot of good a little chat would have done my crying baby at this point, when he needed a parent to be there for him. 

The other mothers, keen not to affront Lisa, softly take my side 'Isn't it normal just to want to rush in and pick your child up?', 'Isn't that what all parents want to do?' and everyone calms down. 

Lisa has her hand on my knee again. Ignoring whatever she is saying, and knowing she didn't even understand what I was saying to Baby, as she does not speak English, I manage to mutter through gritted teeth 'I was telling him it is ok. That is all it means. That it is ok. That I am here.' 

Let me comfort my child, dammit!!!!!! And if you put your hand on my knee again to get my attention, someone else will need a bit of comforting. 

Hmmppff, there we go.... my start to the week. 

PS.: In diesem Beitrag geht es um noch ein interessantes Eltern-Kind-Gruppe Treffen in der Elternschule und das dort regierende Chaos. 

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