I make little bones about the fact that wee wee beasties and I REALLY don’t understand each other. We have no natural chemistry. That kid that smiles shyly at you and runs away? I’m the adult version of that, with small children. We make eye contact, smile at each other nervously, then decide (wisely and in perfect unison) to run the HELL away.
Babies and I do not speak the same language, and probably never will. I would seriously consider adoption simply for the perk of being able to skip the first two years.
There’s just this intensely uncomfortable part, for me, as a person thoroughly wrapped up in expressive language, about communicating with babies. You’ll sooner get a straight answer out of a Magic 8 Ball. For as much ambivalence as I possess about the staring, gelatinous lumps of flesh that babies are, they steadily grow on me as they get old enough to actually express themselves. By the time they make it to middle school I think they’re really and truly brilliant (they agree– this is why middleschoolers and I have always gotten on famously.)
Shopping for babies, however, is the worst. They have no personality (sorry, doting parents, it’s true), so shopping for them– especially for baby showers, when the kid isn’t even born yet– is horrible for someone like me. I work very hard on presents, generally speaking. Thus, shopping for gelatinous lumps of non-personality is the bane of my philosophical existence. Also, marketing for children is basically designed to drive me over the edge.
To illustrate the level of my little kid and related shopping anxiety: