Monthly Archives: January 2009

He’s just not a stroller baby

Or maybe I’m just not a stroller mom.

I’ve been taking O out in his stroller a bit over the past week. We want him to get a bit more used to it, so that his grandparents can take him for walks. It’s gone alright, I guess. He hasn’t screamed – which is what he used to do.

It’s been months since we hauled it out – for a while he didn’t have a snowsuit, so it wasn’t even possible to take him out in it in this cold weather. Then he got a snowsuit for Xmas, so no more excuses.

I’m a stroller newbie. I don’t know how to dress him for it, I’m not very good at negotiating the snowy sidewalks – it’s just not comfortable. I tend to bump into people by accident, and I’m always afraid I’ll lose my grip on the handle going down a hill. I did find myself enjoying the ‘shopping cart ‘ thing, though. You can really stuff that basket full of stuff!

By the time we got home yesterday, I found myself longing for some babywearing cuddlies from my little guy. I popped him in the ringsling and did some tidying. It felt good. O is not a very cuddly baby – there’s too much to see and do to waste time snuggling with mama. So pretty much the only time I get my cuddles in are when he’s in the carrier.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not one of those moms who think strollers are like rolling ‘neglect-o-mobiles’ or anything. Babywearing is what works for us, most of the time. I’m glad we have the stroller option, and I really like the stroller we chose (Baby Jogger brand – CityMini, if anyone’s interested!). I can see that we may use it more as O gets bigger, and the weather gets nicer. I’m a babywearer at heart, though, and I plan on strapping him in as long as he’ll let me!

What about you? Are you a stroller mom/dad? What kind of stroller/babycarrier to you have? A friend once said to me that she did more research on what stroller to get than she did on what car to buy. I can beleive it.

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Conflicted

The other day I was wandering Ikea with some mom friends. There were 4 of us, three strollers. We were in the kids section, and it was not too busy – it was a weekday afternoon. We stopped to look at something, and a woman made it clear she was trying to get around us. By ‘made it clear’ I don’t mean she said ‘excuse me’ or anything polite like that. No – she huffed and rolled her eyes, complaining loudly/to no one in particular about ‘people with kids always in the way’. She tried to step around us and one of my friends, who hadn’t noticed her, stepped in front of her. This woman completely lost it. She started swearing and yelling at us and took off down the stairs, glaring at us over her shoulder the whole time. I just smiled back at her (good for me – I think!).

I found myself all shaky and out of sorts for quite a while afterward. We all laughed it off – “what a crazy lady!” “Don’t come to Ikea if you don’t want to see kids!” But I was reminded of what a hard time I have dealing with conflict.

Being off work on mat leave means that I really don’t have to deal with conflict on any kind of regular basis. Dealing with conflict in a head-on way is something that has been a challenge for me my whole life. I really have to work myself up to it, and it has to be something big and important for me to get confrontational.

Due to the nature of my career (community development, mainly with youth) I have had to deal with conflict on a regular basis, and I do it pretty well, on the job. As long as I can prepare ahead of time, I’m alright. I visualize the conversation, breathe deeply beforehand, prepare myself for a worst-case-scenario. It’s the unexpected conflicts that get me.

How well do you deal with conflict? Is it no big deal, or are you like me? Do you have any tips for me?

Now I’m thinking about work, and going back to work, or not going back to work… that’s definitely a whole different post!

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