I’m going to have, as Tim would say, a bit of a whinge.
In American terms, I’m going to complain.
This weekend, I went to a baby shower. My very first in England. And it might possibly be my last, as I probably won’t be receiving any more invites after my performance.
It was all very British. Very civil. Very quiet. Very polite.
Then I overheard one woman telling the others how she is “appalled” when she goes to the store and sees mothers dumping jars of baby food into their carts.
How dare these women feed their children jars of baby food (gasp!) when there is so much fresh produce available for them to make their own baby food.
Now I realise that people who know me will find this ironic because, I admit, I was one of those mothers. I spent hours steaming and pureeing, cooking and freezing all of Josh’s baby food. Nothing but the freshest produce for my baby. An irony which is not lost on me as Josh, from about 16 months, refused to eat any of my cooking, yet somehow manages to survive on fruit and peanut butter sandwiches.
But I digress.
This woman was criticising other women, other mothers, when she doesn’t even know the reason why they feed their children jars of baby food. Maybe they work. Maybe they have five other children to cook for. Maybe they’re going camping. Who knows.
But whatever their reason, in the grand scheme of things, does it really matter? Do we really have that little support and empathy towards one another as mothers, that we sit around criticising them for feeding their baby food from a jar?
She then continued on, telling how on her train commute, she sees a woman and her son. The boy is about three and every morning the woman gives him one of those packets of baby food. You know the kind. Ella’s organic something or other.
And every evening, she again sees the boy eating another packet on the way home.
I had enough at this point and said something.
I was just picturing the mother of this boy, probably stressed and tired after a day of working, which she does, by the way, to provide for her family, and giving him a snack. It’s not as if he never eats “real food” (which was the implication this woman at the shower was making). In fact, I’d be willing to bet good money that this little boy does not walk around all day, sucking down these packets like some astronaut.
And I can think of a lot worse things she could be feeding him.
It was a lot quieter at the party after I gave my opinion.
At least it means I’ll probably have more free weekends now.