A friend told me yesterday “People who say ‘babies can’t be spoiled’ have no understanding of the nature of human selfishness, and likely haven’t ever been parents.”
Mind you, I definitely don’t think she is wrong but my hormonal, baby blued mind made me look at my almost 4-week old daughter as some kind of evil creature existing just to troll me and make my life miserable. This little baby kept crying and crying and crying and crying and crying …and crying without a clue for me to figure out what could be wrong. Fine, I guess. Why would she cry? I fed her, I changed her, I took her for a walk, I fed her again, changed her, cradled her, carried her around, my goodness!!!…. what could POSSIBLY be wrong? NOTHING! She’s just being an absolute brat. At four weeks old….for a moment…I hated my daughter.
After hours of crying, frustration and cluelessness, we finally figured it out – she was hungry….HUNGRY. “but how?” do you ask. “you said you fed her” … I guess my 4-week parenting experience did not teach me to check for growth spurts. She chugged two more ounces of milk in a matter of seconds. Then she went to sleep like a baby (pun intended), no fighting, no resisting.
What? that was it? All that frustration for so long and for the most simple, basic response I was so desperately crying for. But why would I think she is being selfish out of pure evil? Why would I think that? What is wrong with me? Somehow, knowing she was selfish made ME want to be selfish. It made ME want to show her I am in control. If you need a reality check and a life-changing, humbling experience, have a kid. Really, all you have control over is your reaction to the automatic selfishness. She’s four weeks old. I’m 25 times her age, yet I throw a tantrum like nobody’s business.
The feelings of guilt overwhelm me and humbled me. After a night of sleeping with a sore soul, I woke up still feeling the scars of last night’s fiasco so I do what any new mom does. I text my mom and tell her what happened and how I fixed it… eventually. My mom then tells me “God created them selfish, Laura. It’s how they survive”. huh! Imagine that, it’s their nature and they can’t help it. Yet my wonderful thinking makes
I am thankful I was not left in my ignorance and own selfishness for long. I thank God for my baby never remembering how awful I was last night.. really! awful. Most importantly, I thank God for creating babies selfish. It’s what makes them survivors. As for me, I survive with lots of tears and endless support from my own mom and other mommy friends. Seriously, get yourself a few good mom friends (you don’t need more: watch out for mommy wars!) and spill it all to each other like crazy. It’s the only survival strategy I have.