I’m spending the evening at home babysitting a little one-year-old. She’s pretty adorable, and I was actually pretty excited about it when my wife informed me earlier today that I would be on babysitting duty. I don’t have
a lot of any experience with kids, so I was also a little nervous that I’d ruin her entire life, too. It didn’t occur to me, though, that she’d be asleep the whole time.
I was a little bummed out when I realized I wasn’t gonna get any face time with the kid. Her mom took her straight upstairs and put her to sleep and that was the end of it. I should have guessed, though. There’s no way they’d leave me alone with a kid if there was actually a chance I could mess something up.
As her mom and my wife were leaving the house for the evening, I was given very strict instructions to ignore the kid if I hear her crying. I was told she wouldn’t be hungry, wouldn’t need changing, and short of the house burining down, I should just completely ignore her. (I also joked that if the house did catch on fire, I’d quickly toss the kid out the window. I thought that was pretty funny, but her mom didn’t. Come on, she’d land in like two feet of snow! She’d be fine!)
Well after they left, I decided to try a little bit of hands-on parenting. I went straight to the kitchen and grabbed a couple of diet sodas – one for me, one for the kid, and I started upstairs to wake her up and get her all hopped up on caffeine and candy for the evening. I started wishing I had some of those little half-size cans of soda. A whole can, I thought, could wind up with a diaper needing to be changed. Half-sized cans of soda, I thought, would be perfect for one-year-olds.
Well it was right about that time I got a text message from the kid’s father.
Don’t mess her up. I’ll mess you up.
So I changed my plan a little bit, and just decided to let the kid sleep while I went downstairs to blog about my hands-off parenting style. Turns out, years of playing drums and listening to loud music has left me a little hard of hearing. She might be upstairs crying her head off right now for all I know.
So let me get this straight… All you do with a baby is set it in a playpen thing and ignore it? Doesn’t sound too hard. I think I can handle this.