Posted by: Amber @ NotMommy | May 20, 2010

Mind Your Business

A few weeks ago my father paid me a compliment of sorts.

I was next door visiting (yes, I live next door to my childhood home, where my father still resides).  We had just spent a couple of hours watching Alexa crawl around trying to climb their stairs, pull their lamps over, chew on wires and plugs, eat random chokables off the floor. [1. But seriously, would it kill them to put their goddamn things away?  I mean, seriously, I’m over there at least 3 times a week…she’s a baby who likes to explore.  They used to have gates for my brother’s daughter.  GAH!!!!!!!!!]

The compliment in question was that I “minded my baby well”.  He meant that I didn’t expect others to take care of her as soon as I walked into their house.  That I was still the caregiver, even though other options were available.  That I actually watched over what she was doing instead of expecting them to make sure she wasn’t getting into anything.  He was expressing that it was a pleasure to have us over, because he got to see his granddaughter and watch her do new tricks, but he didn’t really have to do any work, ha!

The thing is, I don’t really trust anyone to take care of Alexa.  I don’t think they’ll be as diligent about making sure she doesn’t fall, or choke, or whatever.  Please, when I let her crawl around under her grandmother’s desk there are ALWAYS paper-clips and bobby-pins. [2. It’s in the living room….errrrr….needs to be away.]  She ALWAYS ends up trying to eat something that could hurt her.  Even when she’s not nibbling on metal, she’s trying to rip paper and magazines to shreds.  After our first choking scare [3. STUPID STUPID STUPID] I’m way too paranoid to trust someone else to make sure it doesn’t happen again!

Aside from my overprotective nature, I’m also hyper aware of what other people find annoying in children.  As you all know, I was militantly child-free for most of my life, and I didn’t like kids AT ALL.  I still don’t really like most other peoples’ children.  I try to keep Alexa calm and relatively quiet when were away from our house.  While I don’t want to stifle her, I want her to learn that there are different expectations for behavior when we’re in the “real world”.

So yes, I mind my baby…because that’s my “business”.  I wish others would be so kind as to do the same :-)



  1. Your such a great mum :) Like you, I “mind my baby well” too!! I just don’t trust anyone to look after Max except Chris and his mum!An even then I’m looking over there shoulders just checking everything is ok :) Whenever we go over to anyones house, I turn in to the safety inspector/watcher! I agree with you.. how hard is it to pick of bits of dangerous crap off the floor… I sometimes feel like I’m being rude but I have to do it!!… It drives me a little nutty!
    I sometimes think about babies who’s parents don’t care at all.. poor little things! At least we do :)
    .-= Lx´s last blog ..Manic Monday Week 9 =-.

    • I just don’t understand why, at the very least, Alexa’s grandparents can’t try to baby-proof just a wee bit. Hmmmm. I don’t feel rude at all, though, picking up and moving stuff at my father’s house. I’m forever putting random stuff up on their tables…ha!

  2. I totally agree with Lx! I’m the same way! If David is with me, he is more relaxed (probably a guy thing), and I am still on Max’s bum watching every move, picking him up and stopping him from going or doing something he shouldn’t. I have never just stopped worrying about him except when he is home, and my MIL comes over to visit. That is about the only time I leave them alone. I trust her, and she watches him like a hawk, and I give her that time to be with him. When I go to my parents, I watch him not my parents. My mom made a comment about 4 months ago, that she was still working on baby proofing, which made me chuckle.
    All three of us are such great moms…seriously. :)

    • I wish more people would come and just visit here! It’s sooooooooo much easier at home. My father used to come visit all the time, but he had surgery on his ankle, so he can’t move around for a few more weeks. The IL’s make everything such a big production that it’s more of a pain to prep for a visit from them :-( My mother is the only one I truly trust Alexa with, and she lives in AL, so she only visits every few months. I can’t wait till she’s out of the “eating everything on the floor” stage! Then maybe I’ll relax a bit.

  3. SO with you on the not trusting other people part. Not because I dislike them or anything, but sometimes when people haven’t had a small child in a very long time, they forget how babies get into EVERYTHING and you have to be hyper diligent about watching them.

    I also agree with keeping the things that annoy other people to a minimum. I think that of course babies deserve to be here and experience things just like everyone else, but I cringe when I see parents in public who let their kids run around restaurants or don’t take a screaming baby out of the room.
    .-= Allison´s last blog ..two months =-.

    • I forgive Peter’s parents for that very reason, they’ve never really been around little ones (well expcept many many years ago when their kids were babies). Alexa is the first grandchild on that side. My father, however, has no excuse. My brother’s daughter is 3.5, and lived at his house for almost a year when she was 1! Yeah…he remembers…that’s why it’s so annoying.

      Babies NEED to be out in the world to learn how to act in public when they’re children. It’s so funny, now that Alexa is getting bigger, and far more aware, she’s weirded out when we go places where she’s not the center of attention. She’s so used to being around people that play such special attention to her, that she thinks everyone wants to engage with her in the same manner. Just the other day we went to a diner and she just kept staring other tables down like “LOOK AT ME DAMMIT!!!!!” ha :-)

  4. I’m hyper-aware of things other people find annoying about children…so much that sometimes I think I stress myself out unnecessarily! If were out in public (as opposed to someone’s home) I’m constantly having to remind myself that Westley is NOT the first two-year-old to: throw a tantrum in Target, spill a drink in the coffee shop, drop noodles all over the floor of the restaurant, whatever.
    .-= Noelle – Baby in Broad´s last blog ..…Hair to Stay =-.

    • HAHA good point about not being the first kid to make a scene in a public place! I too stress myself out a little more than necessary, because I really just don’t want to be “that family” with the kid who’s making everyone else miserable. Need to let up on that a bit I think :-)

  5. I’m the same way! So at family functions when everyone else just throws their kid down in front of Grandma on the floor I’m actually… watching mine. Partly because I think the other people are a little lazy and partly because yes! kids can be annoying! and your house isn’t AT ALL babyproof and my baby is going to eat that penny. And maybe that thumb tack that is on the floor over there for some reason.

    I don’t know, sometimes I feel like I’m on a high-horse like oh you LAZY people not watching your babies! …And then other times I wish that someone would pick up their living room and put up baby gates so just for ten minutes I could pass the Jude off to Grandma. But, that’s not in the cards, the safety and paying attention cards.
    .-= Jamie´s last blog ..adventures in the life of jude =-.

    • GAH! I was just over at my dad’s house again today. He actually asked us to come over this morning. What do I find when I walk into the living-room? Oh oooooh a shiny penny just waiting there to be gobbled up! So effin’ sick of picking up random crap over there :-(

  6. I’m part of a play group that is made up of moms and kids who are all about the same age as my daughter (2.5 yrs). Some of the moms have or are having their second child now, so they are toting along newer babies to our playdates. With our toddlers, we pretty much just let them do their thing, my uber-protective days have waned, but most of the moms are still very protective of their new babies. Except one. Who hands her kid off at the drop of a hat. If I so much as give his cheek a tweek, she’s thrusting him in my arms so she can wander off to do something else. It drives me CRAZY. There are other issues with her, but I am starting to feel like she sees our playgroups as free babysitting so she can hang out and chat with the other ladies while someone else manages her kids. Not cool at all. Okay, vent over. All of which is to say, minding your own children is a much appreciated thing!

    Hey, we’d like to feature you next Monday at BlogTrotting! Can you have a tour post ready?

    • HATE people that look for the first chance to ditch their kid. Even when we’re with family who want to watch Alexa (for a few minutes anyway) I almost never hand her off. Peter’s mother is ALWAYS holding out her arms while we’re eating, and I’m like “oh no I’m ok”. Maybe I SHOULD hand her over, but I don’t wanna :P

      It is good to know that the crazy overprotective time may end eventually, as it has for you :-)

  7. Similar to Carabee’s playgroup Mommies, I am the type of Mom who lets my PreSchooler have a bit more freedom and am very vigilant over my infant. I want to watch without hovering, but not have my kids be “those” kids who are crazy animals.

    • HEHE “those” kids are indeed animals! Yeah, I don’t want one of them either :-)

  8. I don’t remember when was the last time I had a conversation with another adult were I was able to keep an eye contact or even finish my story… I’m hoping that after my second one is born I will get a second pair of eyes or at least an extra hand.
    .-= mrs.notouching´s last blog ..Because… =-.

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