I took Coco to a nursing mom's group last night.
She actually nursed right before we left, so I stuck her in the carseat and popped the binky in her mouth and we hit the road.
When we walked in, I set her carseat down and an inquisitive little two-year-old boy came over to see the baby.
"Oh," his mom said to me, "He's wondering what that is! We never used a pacifier."
She said it with a smile, but it sounded as SMUG as possible.
If only I'd had an extra binky. I would have popped one in his mouth right then.
Now, I GET that there are people who choose not to use pacifiers (crazy people) (kidding). I get that there are babies who won't take pacifiers. I get that there are people who struggle with breastfeeding and maybe a binky could complicate that further. But seriously.
So then I fought her.*
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Today at the park there was a mom with her seventeen-month-old toddler. He was climbing around pretty well and she was following him on the jungle gym.
Zuzu climbed up on her own and I stood underneath, pushing Coco back and forth in the stroller, hoping she'd doze off. (She didn't.)
Zuzu marched herself up the stairs to the tall twisty slide. This wasn't our usual park, but she's a master of the tall twisty slide. She has no fear and she's been going down tall twisty slides since before she turned two.
The little boy tried to follow her.
"No, no!" his mom said. "You're not big enough for that slide." (Which, granted, he really wasn't).
Zuzu launched herself down that slide as the boy and his mom headed across the bridge. I'm not sure what move she was trying to do, but she ended up twisting around and somersaulting. She's chosen to go down the slide head-first on multiple occasions, so I didn't think much of it. She came off the slide kind of fake-crying, so obviously her descent didn't quite go as planned, but she was obviously fine and looking to me for a cue as to how to react, so I just smiled at her and said, "Whoa! That was crazy!"
The other mom turns to her kid and goes, "And that's why you don't go down that slide."
UMMMMMM, EXCUSE ME?
I was just standing there, sort of stunned at her passive-aggressive parenting judgment, and Zuzu looked to this other mom for a cue and then started whining but she was CLEARLY just fine and so I said, "You're fine. You need to be safe on the slide." She rubbed her head and said, "I bonked." (Which, yeah, she probably did, but not very hard and also that's a daily occurrence and also: natural consequences.)
And then the other mom was all, "Oh, honey, are you okay?" to MY KID.
And then I fought her.**
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I really feel totally fine about the fact that I give my baby a pacifier. Also, I have made a deliberate and conscientious decision not to hover over my kid at the playground (as much as I want to). I happen to love the fact that a binky keeps Coco from screaming in the car. I'm also proud of Zuzu for being a confident climber, jumper, and slider--her gross motor skills are one of her strengths. So it's not like I'm second-guessing my parenting choices based on these comments.
I just am a little appalled that people are so rude.
Or maybe the weirder thing is that I haven't had encounters like this before, and then I had two of them on back-to-back days. I mean, who does that?