My first baby came in the middle of December during the height of an RSV breakout. I was scared to death to leave the house with her and the one time I did I ended up in tears at the photo counter of a neighborhood drugstore because they wouldn’t give me my pictures. As a tiny baby Addie sat there in her car seat, I imagined every germ in the entire store swooping right up her tiny little nostrils because I was dumb enough to bring her out in public so soon.
So, some of my worry may have come from a yet-to-be diagnosed case of postpartum depression and anxiety, but taking tiny little people out in public can be horrifying. You never know who’s going to sneeze, who you’re going to meet or even worse, who’s going to touch (OR KISS!) your baby.
I can remember spending entire afternoons with my best friend at a local children’s hospital because her daughter has contracted a horrible case of RSV in her first year. Had I seen that before ever having kids of my own? I would have never left the safety of my home smothered with my own germs. I will say that having a baby in the summer the second time around made a big difference in my level of worry when it came to germs and bacteria flying at my baby’s face.
When Vivi was three months old I took her to a blogging conference in San Diego. We hadn’t even been at the hotel for an hour when someone took her out of her stroller without asking. (WHAT?) Ironically Vivi had completely messed her pants so the poor person that helped themselves to my baby ended up with a sleeve full of poo. While many people respected Vivi’s personal space, a lot took to kissing, holding her hands or touching her face.
Let’s just get this out of the way now:
RULES OF TOUCHING CASEY’S BABIES
A) Do not pick up without asking.
B) Do not touch or kiss face or hands. Her hands go in her mouth, where have your hands been?
C) Feet are fine to touch with hands only.
D) Think I’m being grouchy? It’s my baby. Back off.
Whew, I realize that seems kind of grouchy, and I’m sure you don’t mean ill when you come by to say hi to my baby and I realize she’s pretty irresistible. Truth is, it’s not YOU specifically, it’s that there’s a thousand other people out there who think it’s okay to touch a baby out in public. I’m sure you’re a very clean person, but even I can’t have a thousand clean looking people touching my baby out in public. No hard feelings okay?
If it makes you feel any better, when Addie would come home from school the first thing I’d tell her to do was wash her hands. If Addie ever came home sick? There was a strict rule in place that if she got the baby sick she would be sold at auction. I’m no neat freak, and I’m fine with germs being around, but I don’t need a hundred other people helping me spread them all over my new baby.
Thanks, I hope you understand.
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