My youngest is just over a month old now and this whole new mom thing — while not technically new — has been an interesting ride. It doesn’t seem to matter how many times you’ve done it before, or how prepared you think you are for all that comes with a newborn — you’re always caught off-guard by something.
I’ve been caught off-guard by a clingier-than-the-others baby, what working with a newborn is really like, and some questions I am asked over and over again when I’m out of the house with my babe. People love newborns. When they’re tiny, new and adorable they tend to get a lot of attention. At least, that’s been my experience lately.
I’ve had people stop me in all sorts of places to take a quick glance at my freshest baby. I love that people find him adorable — because I totally agree with them. But, if I’m being totally honest, there are the questions that come with the glances that leave me a little tired of all the attention.
"New Mom" Questions I’m Tired of Answering 1 of 8
It's not just how often I hear them, it's how personal they are.
“Is This Your First Baby?” 2 of 8
It's a totally innocent question and I'm not saying there's anything wrong with asking. I am, however, asked in nearly every conversation with a stranger and it's the shock and awe I get when I say it's my fourth baby that's the peeve.
“How Old Are You?” 3 of 8
OK, so people think I am young -- that's kind of a compliment, right? Well, it's always asked right after I say he's my fourth baby. I am at the age where most are starting to have their first -- 31 years old -- but the question makes me feel like a freak.
“How Much Did He Weigh?” 4 of 8
People comment on his tiny size all the time. It's usually a conversation that started with them asking how old he is and when I say he's just over a month, they ask how much he weighed at birth. He was a tiny guy, for us anyway, and now at a month old he just hit the birth weight of my older kids.
“Is He Sleeping Yet?” 5 of 8
Dude, he's a month old. I have bags under my eyes the size of whoa -- they're hidden under large sunglasses. I just love the "yet" part of the question -- like he's supposed to be sleeping all night? Since my oldest child didn't start sleeping more than four hours at a time until he was older than 2, I don't expect well-rested sleep any time soon.
“Did You Have a C-section?” 6 of 8
I don't know if the people asking this question ask in fear that it was a c-section birth or in hopes that I didn't have a vaginal birth. It's a weird thing to ask a stranger unless they're pregnant themselves and looking for tips on what to expect. It's not a conversation to strike up while packing groceries though.
“Is He a Good Baby?” 7 of 8
It's usually the older crowd who ask this question and it's a complicated thing to answer. I believe they're really asking if he's a good eater and sleeper and gives me no troubles, but really -- how can a baby not be good?
“Are You Breastfeeding” 8 of 8
I mean, personal, right? And if the size of my chest doesn't answer it, I'm scared. I don't mind answering because I am pretty open about advocating for breastfeeding, but from strangers... it's a little much.
All images © Devan McGuinness