I’m going to jump a bit out of the timeline of our trip here to talk about something really interesting that happened to me at a coffee shop earlier this week. While there’s so much more to write about on the Baby G 2013 tour this experience is too interesting to not share.
Currently I’m in London. I’m a happy girl taking a very exciting adventure across the pond. More on that at a later date but, OH BOY let me tell you for now I am a happy happy girl!
I’m also in London town for work. I’m taking meetings to help my one band expand to the UK/European markets and between meetings I work out of the coffee shops scattered around this old and beautiful city. Earlier in the week I had my “mobile” office set up with my various devices scattered on the coffee table in front of me with my mid-day coffee and snacks waiting for my attention at a Starbucks.
A mother with a little baby boy no more than a year sat across from me in the shop. It was obvious the baby had just learned how to walk and was relishing in the new found freedom, also obvious the newer mother was still getting use to the new mobility. Like any little person with freedom the baby was curious about everything around him. He toddled over the the coffee table in front of me. I watched him bee lining it for the electronics and hot/dangerous cup of tea. I glanced up to the mother and back at the child waiting for her intervention but I was shocked at what happened next. Instead of stepping in and reprimanding her child for touching a strangers things she sternly and slightly frustrated reprimanded me! Telling me in the strong mom voice to “tell him no”. The “over space and privacy conscience” New Yorker inside of me was horrified and I stuttered over my words trying to kindly tell the baby “no” all along feeling like I was doing something horribly wrong telling this strangers child what to do.
And so here we have it, G’s not even with me this trip (she will be next one!) but the cultural differences in parenting styles and expectations are already obvious.
Eventually another english lady took the seat up next to me and started conversing with the mother and the baby. To my shock the stranger not only started right in to give the mother parenting advice but also without a second thought offered the child a bite of her cake. Let me be clear here, a stranger offered the child a bite of her food, and from the mother’s non-response this was nothing out of the norm. Again my inner american was yelling in the back of my brain “what if they don’t eat gluten! How dare she offer that child sugar without asking the mother! What if he’s allergic to eggs!!!! as I watched on in shock.
It’s interesting to think as traveling and living abroad as parents not only do you have to adjust to the new places but also the new parenting styles like this situation. I’m so interested to see how things are on the UK playgrounds and child friendly spaces.
While I’m away G’s staying with Melissa and her amazing family. Last night when I skyped with them it was so heart warming to see G snuggled up to Melissa and knowing she’s getting everything she needs while I’m away. I’m so thankful. These two little girls are learning how to share and spend 24/7 with each other which we all seem to agree is such good lesson for them both. (Bless Melissa and Brent for taking on the the two week challenge of THREE children!) I’m so thankful for the beautiful people in our lives that are becoming such big role models for G as she’s growing up.
Thank you M and B for making this trip possible!!!!!
Flash back photos!
G and Everly’s first meeting
Now the wild child little girls they have become (the princess and the dragon)