Stupid Baby Tricks

by doodaddy on March 10, 2008

Yesterday Boobaby announced out of nowhere, "I have a rubber band on my arm." An eight word sentence!

20080310-001
I bet your kid can’t do this!
OK, maybe your kid has a little more common sense.

As we praised her brilliance and her forearm turned blue, I had the briefest pang of worry. Should we really be counting words in Boo’s sentences and identifying every milestone? Plotting how quickly she can identify her letters?

Being excited about development seems completely normal. But when Boo’s friend EJ was demonstrating her mastery of colors today (she knew that one leaf was "dark green" and another was "light green," darn her!), I found myself involuntarily feeling a little jealous! Envious of a two-year old!

Sure, some parents elevate their natural pride to ridiculous heights. I once told a playground mom about our music class and she snorted, "Oh, we used to do that, but now we’re only doing music class in Spanish." She went on to tell me how her 30-month old could do an arabesque and play chopsticks. I nodded with a neutral expression that she undoubtedly took as approval, but which really masked my inner voice telling me to Run Away! Run Away! Quick!

Still, I really want to get excited about Boo’s accomplishments for no reason other than that they make her happy. But when she finds a bug or learns a song, I admit, I really want her to show them to other adults. In the back of my mind (OK, probably in the front of my mind) is the hope that these parents will think, "Wow, that girl can sing ‘Tainted Love’ while holding a millipede! That’s some damn good parenting!"

Plus, what about the naughty stuff Boo does — if I’m proud of her achievements, how should I feel that she’s kind of a bully sometimes?

So I have a hard time drawing the line between pride and hubris, embarrassment and acceptance. As with so many other bits about being a dad, I get really muddled around this question.

Oh, well. At least I’m not doing this to my kid.

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tagged as , in fears,pride,stupid baby tricks ·

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Xbox4NappyRash March 10, 2008 at 4:07 pm

I just hope the siren in the background was the police escort for social services rushing to the scene…

AND…the only human who should need a nappy (diaper **sigh**) while playing a guitar is Paul McCartney.

AND…English is NOT that kids first language, weird on so many levels.

AND…that picture is brilliant again.

AND…Proud man, always proud!

Reply

Rattling the Kettle March 10, 2008 at 5:25 pm

I try not to compare my kid to others.

The other parents tend to not like it, seeing as how mine is better than theirs.

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Dan March 11, 2008 at 1:12 am

It’s a fine line to walk allright. It’s easy with your second. You’re so busy looking after two you just sort of look up and notice they have been walking for three weeks.

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Jessica March 11, 2008 at 12:52 pm

The pride thing is completely normal. When Lil’ Bum was very little and had an unusually large vocabulary and grasp of it I couldn’t help but swell. And when she was more clumsy in dance class than the others I thought to myself, “Well, she may not be able to do the dance moves but I bet she can tell you their names.”

I’m being silly.

I do get irritated with those parents who are not sharing their kids accomplishments, they are trying to rub your nose in it.

Be proud of you girl and don’t think twice. How cute is that picture.

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