Thursday, 24 April 2014

I like happy babies. And happy kids.

One of my good friends have just had a kid, as in the baby was born like today (at the time of writing). Most of my friends are with a child or two. Me, as another friend put it, I am in no hurry.

Yes, I did say previously that there is no point of being married if you don't procreate, as in, if one day I were to get married, then that is because I wanted to procreate. Turns out that my desires to procreate are like... err... non-existent right now, thus I don't see why I should even consider procreation in the absence of such desires. The worst thing one can do in life is to be a reluctant parent. Or I should have said, one of the worst things I could do in my life is to be a reluctant parent. Biological clock issues asides, an equally important issue is whether one wishes to be a parent or not.

Get this: whenever I come across as a cute photo or a video of a friend's cute baby, it always makes me smile. Without fail, every time. And yes, sometimes, I watch them more than once, in succession. I can't help it, it's cute, it makes smile, sometimes laugh, it makes me feel good, without me actually having to do anything substantial. Happy babies make you happy. Happy babies almost make me want to have a kid. Almost.

Of course these are also true: (1) happy babies are not happy all the time and (2) not all babies are happy. Some babies are happier than others, and some babies are more high maintenance than others (they are all high maintenance). Let's not go down to estimates, numbers and percentages as to what makes up happy babies versus non-happy babies, because that's not the point. The point is this: I only like happy babies.

It is obvious that happy babies are attractive, just like happy people are attractive - you know, happiness is contagious and all that jazz. So if I get to pick the sort of kid that I may end up with, then yeah, okay, I shall give it further consideration. Of course it doesn't work this way. I know that. And people derive this rather odd pleasure of telling me things that I already know just because I am putting forward an impossible alternative. Then again, it is only impossible until it's done. I don't wish to discuss this further, by the way, for fear that I may be labelled as playing God or anything along those lines. Or that designer babies are less of babies than their naturally designed counterparts. Whatever.

What makes babies happy? How much of it is nurture vs nature? I would like to think that happy babies are healthy babies, you know, the ones who are fed on a regular basis, poop on a regular basis (trust me, this is important) and sleep on a regular basis. I hate feeling hungry and I hate being constipated and I am always cranky whenever I don't get enough sleep. So I have a very low expectation of a happy life: if I am fed, have poo-ed and slept enough, then I am happy. [All of these plus a great husband, great friends and other great stuff make for a great life, to me. Other great stuff includes great shoes.]

Those are the physical stuff. The non-physicals are: independence, self-reliance and a good heart; plus a healthy sense of balance. I don't like babies who cling so desperately to their mothers, for example, I like the ones who are comfortable being around people (fair enough if they cry they run to mommy). I like babies who come over for cuddles occasionally, but spend most of their waking hours happily playing away on their own. And if they can share their toys, that would be even better. Wishful thinking? Probably. One can hope.

I am generally pretty honest about my stance on this matter, although this is the first time I have ever written this, ever. There are people who love kids, like all kids. I am not one of those people. If I see a kid who doesn't want to eat, you can bet your money that I will not be spending any time or effort to convince the kid to eat. This is to be differentiated from feeding kids who want to eat, which I have done a few times, thanks to having nephews and nieces. Actually, that's a lie. If they don't want to eat and they're supposed to eat, I ask the mum to change the food, and this usually solves the issue. There is no point forcing the kid to eat something they don't like. Seriously. Too much effort. I opt for the solution that requires less effort for me (okay, perhaps not so much the mum).

Side note: when I was looking for a title for this piece, I wanted to write "I like happy babies. And happy kids. And happy people" before I stopped myself just in time and deleted the last three words. Because I don't really want to write why I like happy people and because it infers that I dislike the opposite. I think, if we were to be honest with ourselves, and we get to pick our moods and the moods of the people in our lives, we all opt for the ones who are happy, who are positive. But life is not like that, we can't be happy all the time and we learn to offer support for our friends when they are not happy, in the hope that they would feel better. Anyway, if you want to comment, you gotta do so via Twitter (it's free!). For less heavy stuff, head over to Project Rum n Raisin, and instagram for some drool-fest.

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