Posted January 10, 2010on:
Food has always been a prominent issue in our family and I was blessed with no morning sickness during our pregnancy and so we were still able to indulge ourselves whenever.
Since our first born (Son) however, hubby and I have been lamenting on the loss of our peaceful times of savouring our food and finishing it at our pace. During the early months, we were lugging him around in his (Graco) baby carrier which could detach easily from the car seat base and there were no places that were out of bounds. We’ve brought him to hawker centres (balanced on stools), fine restaurants (fancy chairs), food courts (inside those shopping carts) and even a wedding dinner or two (on the floor, we chose seats near the wall).
However all that changed when he started getting mobile…. and vocal. We’ve always known he’d be an active boy. When we first saw him via the ultra scan at Week 10 or so, before we could see the monitor, the first thing that the doctor said was ‘Wah, such an active baby”. He was literally ‘jumping’ up and down in a horizontal position. And through out the third trimester he was constantly squirming around, much to my distress. So we were not surprised when we find ourselves having to not only take turns to eat, we have to shovel our food in for the sake of our spouse.
Son is now 27 months old and during the Christmas season, I was just asking my sisters when would it be before hubby and I could enjoy eating in peace again. Their children are grown and they could barely hide their smugness and smirks as they told me to get used to it as there’ll be many more years to come.
This morning however, something changed. Maybe Son was genuinely tired, even though he’s had a full night’s sleep and it was just 10 in the morning, 3.5 hours away from his afternoon nap. Maybe the Thomas Train set was really that engrossing, it did after all have mountains to climb and valleys to slide down to plus there were lots of obstacles that he just had to put on the train’s tracks. Or maybe he just got plain tired of his Old Folks and wanted a break from them. Whatever it was, for the first time, the magic word “kai-kai” (Cantonese for streets, meaning to go out) failed to put some momentum in his legs. He just paused for a while and said ‘No’.
Stunned, hubby and I looked at each other and repeated : We’re going kai-kai (emphasis), let’s go.
Son : No (without pausing at what he was doing)
Me : Are you sure?
Son : Sure (without deigning to look at us)
Us : Well, ok then. You stay with Kakak and we are going kai-kai…… driving in the car.
Son : Bye bye Mama. Bye bye Daddy (again not looking at us)
We started going down and made a big fuss of opening the front grill door… but no little voice shouting out for us. We opened the gate and started the car….but no foot steps running down the stairs. We drove away and waited about 20m away….but no telephone call from Kakak frantically asking us to come back. We lasted only as far as after the guard house before pulling over to make a call back home.
Kakak : (Malay) He’s alright, playing, not crying at all.
Well, I guess that just left us having to go and have breakfast ourselves without the screaming banshee/tornado that won’t sit still. Hubby and I gleefully looked at each other and straight away decided to try out this new place that was always packed and where tables and stools are packed together to maximize the seating capacity (translation = no place for impatient toddlers who is always on the move).
The place was packed as usual but we managed to get our tables after just 10 minutes. The variety was good and when the food came, we understood why the place was packed every time. However, good though the food was, our hearts just weren’t in it. Packed and noisy though the place, we found it a bit too quiet and lonely, we wanted our own baby’s noise. We knew that’d be the day when we’d be able to sit down and enjoy our meal in peace and quiet but we didn’t expect it so soon. For heaven’s sake, he’s only 27 months old, he’s only supposed to want to stop hanging out with his parents when he’s approaching his teens, not now??
Well we got our ‘peace and quiet’, we got our good food but we wanted our noise too. It was a very quick meal for us as we gobbled our way through (there were many people waiting for the tables, you know, we are being considerate too) and then drove back home. Yet when we reached home, nary a look from him. We were not missed.