Today on Slate, I have an article up about the photos many of you longtime readers have already seen, of myself “celebrating” the baby’s hard-won nap or nighttime sleep by cheerfully (and tongue-in-cheekily) flipping her off. Some people think it’s very funny. (Thank you, those people!!!)
There has already also been quite the anger-response around the Internets. My favorite sub-oeuvre is definitely the innumerable men (MEN!!!!) who have haughtily informed me that if I didn’t know what it would take to parent, I shouldn’t have had a baby. Now, I realize there are single and stay-at-home dads out there, who spend 20-23 hours a day with their babies glommed onto them, reacting to the relentless stream of need need need need need with patience, compassion, humor and endless, boundless love. I do not think any of these dipshits Tweeting at me belong to that group, however, because if they were single or stay-at-home dads with high-need babies THEY WOULD NOT HAVE TIME to fuck with my shit on Twitter. So, mansplainers of the Internet, when you’ve regularly spent 2-5 hours walking and nursing and walk-nursing your baby until finally and mercifully she slips into slumber, COME TALK TO ME.
Anyone who actually reads the whole article can see that in my house, the middle finger isn’t a gesture of real hostility, but rather mock-hostility. Anyone who actually reads it can see quite clearly that I love my daughter ferociously, that I am endlessly and helplessly devoted to her, often to the detriment of all my other human relationships and definitely do the detriment of my work. I love my daughter so much that just looking at her–just thinking about her right now–makes me well up with tears, and (TMI alert) makes my milk let down.
My computer’s been broken for awhile (it’s fixed now!) so I haven’t been blogging at all, but I got a new one, so I should be back around here more again. The baby will be seven months old on Friday, and I’ll be incorporating the extent of the Baby Bird Backlash into her seven-month letter.