Babies look so sweet and innocent. We parents often stare at them and wonder what it is they dream about when they close their eyes and what they think about when they stare at their mobiles. The truth is that babies actually have a lot more going on than we might assume. They are plotting and planning. You think that smile that you saw cross your newborn’s face was just gas? Think again.
Here are 12 Tricks Babies Play on Their Parents
1. The Hidden Poop. You begin the diaper change thinking it’s just pee in there – no big deal. There is no smell or hint of what is to come. Then you open up the diaper and…Oh my god! Apocalypse! Call in back up!
2. The Fake Out. You pick the baby up and the smell is just overwhelming. This diaper change is one for the record books. You open a new package of wipes and strap a respirator onto your face. You are going to need every weapon in the arsenal. But when you open the diaper, all you find is a teeny tiny turd. Miniscule. You’ve been subjected to the Fake Out.
3. The Inconvenient Pass-Out. The baby has been screaming in the car for the past thirty minutes. The GPS says, “The destination is on your right,” when suddenly you notice that the back seat is suspiciously silent. You squint into the mirror hanging over your baby’s car seat and at first you don’t believe it. There is no way those tiny eyes are closed. But they are. What are you going to do now? Wake the baby up or give him a brief car nap? Either way, it’s not going to be good.
4. The Sleeping Not Sleeping Trick. The baby has fallen into a deep sleep in her highchair or on top of your chest. Now all you have to do is get her to her crib. You gingerly pick her up. The baby sleeps through it! You tiptoe slowly and carefully to the baby’s room. The baby is still sleeping! It’s a miracle! Then you lay the baby in her crib. The baby must think she is being placed on a cloud because you have been so careful. You withdraw your arms. The baby’s eyes are still closed! Success! Finally you straighten your back and begin to turn away. The baby pops awake. She is fully consciousness and screaming louder than you thought was even possible. You’ve been duped by the Sleeping Not Sleeping Trick.
Tricks Babies Play to Make Their Parents Look Like Fools:
5. I Love You, I Love You Not. You are holding your baby but the baby is smiling and cooing at someone else. You are kind of just standing there like a rock while you’re baby makes friends. So you begin to pass the baby… The baby’s happy face instantly melts into the saddest frown. He looks at you with an expression of horror as if to say, ‘Why would you ever think that was okay? Just because I was looking at someone and smiling and reaching for that person, does NOT mean I actually want you to pass me off! How could you even think such a thing?’
6. Hidden Talents. Your six-month-old is capable of doing back flips and just learned to sing Iceland’s national anthem. But when you try to get her to show her stuff, she sits on your lap with drool coming out of her mouth resembling a guppy more than a genius. You didn’t actually expect your baby to perform on command, did you?
7. Suddenly Healthy. Babies especially like to play tricks on their parents at the doctor’s office. At home your child is running a fever of 126 degrees and definitely has a lazy eye. But when you finally get see the doctor, the baby’s temperature has returned to 98.6 degrees and her eyes are perfectly symmetrical.
Tricks Babies Play Because Babies Are Mean:
8. The Outfit that Will Never Be Worn. You buy a cute outfit but it is too big. You think, “No problem. My baby will grow into this soon.’ But the baby is thinking, ‘I will never wear these adorable clothes. Flowers? Trains? What do you take me for?’ So you wait a few weeks and try it on the baby, but it still too big. You wait a few more weeks and try the outfit on the baby again and…it’s too small. Babies love to trick their parents by growing in unpredictable, rapid spurts. The more expensive the clothes, the better.
9. The Bait and Switch Snack-Eater. Your baby gets to try a taste of someone else’s snack. He loves it! So he eats an embarrassing amount of the food that doesn’t belong to him. You keep promising that you really do feed your child and even produce 36 different kinds of crackers from your diaper bag. Your baby will only eat the new amazing snack. Flash forward to a week later: You’re at the grocery store and this magic snack is on sale so you buy five or ten boxes of it. When you get home, you try to feed the baby the magic snack. Now the baby won’t touch it except to drop it on the floor for the dog.
10. Extendo-arms. You have to get up from the table to get a something so you push your baby’s food far out of his reach. When your back is turned, you hear the plate crash to the floor. How did the baby do that? No one knows because no living person has been able to see a baby’s extendo-arms trick. It’s one of a baby’s most closely guarded secrets.
11. Hiding and Seek Mouth. You know you saw the baby put a piece of dog food into their mouth. You are so sure that is exactly what happened. But now when you pry the baby’s incredibly strong jaws open, the mouth is empty. The baby couldn’t have tried to swallow such a big piece or she would be gagging. It has to be in there somewhere. You try a finger sweep into the throat…nothing. You catch a glimpse of the kibble deep inside the left cheek. You try a finger sweep there and…nothing. Welcome to Hide and Seek Mouth. It’s one of every baby’s favorite tricks.
The Biggest Best Baby Trick of All
12. Irresistibly Cute. The baby looks at you with giant eyes. In them you see mischief, intelligence, and unconditional love. You imagine your baby all grown up, lovingly pushing your wheelchair around a nursing home. Your heart swells with love. You pick up your baby and bury your nose in the softness of their neck. Your heart explodes. You have fallen for Irresistibly Cute. This is the baby’s best trick because it makes you forget about all the other tricks they play on you.
Copyright 2016 Britta Eberle as first published on Sammiches and Psych Meds