I am not an overprotective parent, nor is Tony. We just want what is best for our son. Tonight, we attended Tony’s staff Christmas party with Sacha in tow. Although we could have hired a sitter, we are not comfortable leaving him alone with someone. It would be a totally different story if we have relatives nearby, but unfortunately, the airfare to get one of our parents to sit for us would really be out of our price range. We have taken Sacha out in public many times – restaurants, church, coffee-shops, library, stores, 6 flights, malls, etc. He is always a delight. The occasional cry, but nothing a little calming from Mommy or Daddy can’t cure. He had been in a good mood all day, had some good naps and ate well. This is why we had no qualms about bringing him to the party tonight.
Until we got there. Tony walks into the room with Sacha in his carseat, and before I even had time to enter, one of Tony’s crazy co-workers was ripping Sacha’s snowsuit off and yanking him out of his car seat. May I now point out that Sacha was JUST waking up. So the first thing he experienced upon waking was the sight, smell, and touch of a stranger. Of course, he started to protest – very loudly and forcefully. Yet the psycho-hose beast would not give him back to his parents. FInally, we stole him back and I tried my best to calm him down. It worked – for about 15 minutes. Then it was all screaming again. Tony took him into the hallway and rocked him, but to no avail. Every time he cried, some new stranger put their face in Sacha’s personal space, thus causing Sacha to scream all the more.
I finally couldn’t take it. I went to Tony, took Sacha and went to the ladies room, where there was a beautiful powder room and such, including a fluffy couch for me to nurse Sacha on. That worked out ok, and Sacha ate, clutching onto my shirt for dear life, lest some insane woman come and steal him from his Mommy. After he ate (and spit up – this is Sacha, remember) he stayed curled up in my arms and I sang to him, and played with him with his Winnie the Pooh rattle (he loves that thing) and his pen-light. He was nice and content when an older lady walks in and says to me: “What did you do, sedate him?” Yes. I sedated my child in order to sit in the bathroom all night at a Christmas party. That is really my idea of a good time. Seriously, what a retarded thing to say.
But that was only the beginning of the retardedness. Sacha continued to have melt-downs every time someone came into the bathroom. He would look at them and start howling. To the unwise listener, you would surely think that someone was branding him or other such torture. Then there was another spectacle of a woman who looked at him crying and said “What’s wrong with him?” “He doesn’t like you,” I thought. What I really said was “He’s just overwhelmed by the noise, the room is very warm, etc” To which she said “It is NOT loud in there. I wish it was louder.” Huh?! Handitard! What kind of stupid comment it that? Like it’s my baby’s fault that he doesn’t like the noise level in the room.
Another woman walks in (whom I’ve never met” and says “Do you want me to hold him?” I’m thinking “Sure! Take my screaming child! I know that I am a bad mom and that you will calm him down in a heartbeat! I must be just holding him the wrong way. “ I just politely said “No, thanks”
Tony had tried to take Sacha a few times to give me a break, but Sacha would have none of that. I think after his horrific incident involving the stripping of the snowsuit by a possessed woman, he wanted to have one hand connected to Mommy at all times, just to make sure I didn’t disappear (or pass him off to anyone else). So I ended up eating 3 meatballs and a piece of broccoli in the bathroom while rocking a screaming Sacha. Finally, I gave up. I got Julie (who had been keeping me company, thank goodness!) to go get Tony for me. We were out of here.
The second Sacha was back in his snowsuit, he let out a little smile – he knew he was on his way home! On our way out of the restaurant, the same lady who told me to sedate Sacha added that we should try and make him more sociable next time. Great; thanks, tips. That is the best thing I’ve heard all day.
Tony and I both fumed all the way home – not because Sacha screamed all night, but because of the sheer boldness of people, to assume that they can steal our son out of his car seat, to imply that I should sedate my son, or that he should be more sociable. It is amazing how as parents, you are stuck between a rock and a hard place. If you don’t let people hold your baby, you’re seen as overprotective and mean, even if you KNOW that your baby will scream bloody murder as soon as anyone else besides Mommy or Daddy hold him. So we politely say “Well, you can try,” and wait for the inevitable screaming that will result in less than 10 seconds. And really, shouldn’t most people who have kids KNOW this? Yet it seems like the ones who are the worst with Sacha are the ones who have children (and grandchildren) of their own. The others are too scared of babies to even get close.
We both maintain that if I would have been the one to take Sacha out of his seat when he woke up (and that he would have seen him Mommy and Daddy first thing) he would have been ok. He has never screamed like that for such a long time (Julie even said that) – he was completely terrified from the second he was torn from his seat and held in the arms of a stranger before Mommy even had time to blink. Way to ruin what should (and could) have been a perfectly lovely evening.