Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Who's imperfect, baby?

Our son is ugly.

All right, only some of the time - and, of course, he's always numero uno in our overall cuteness ratings. But when people claim to just love every feature of their children (or spouse, though let's not tread on eggshells here), it taps into a certain guilt. Or make that disbelief.

Sonny has an infuriating way of scrunching up his face, just before commencing yowling in earnest, that reminds us of a certain someone we deplore. His facial lines contract into a sour-pear mass of ill will and petulance. And we hate that. His mien when actually bawling is fine. His general 'grumpy baby' demeanour is positively endearing. But that one expression... we've been known to plead with him to wipe it from his repertoire, which is probably nuthouse-grade.

There's no point telling us to 'learn to love the flaw'. And, truth be told, it may well be a good thing that we harbour this absurd dislike. For, obviously, it doesn't really reveal anything about Sonny, whether his character or his looks. Rather, it says something about us, and it ain't anything flattering. We're being unreasonable. Failing to get past trivialities. Yet it's that very fact that's useful: Each time we shudder at our son's petulant face, it reminds us of our imperfections, and that our assessments and parental actions might therefore be infected with unreason. Call it a little warning against hubris.

In Sonny's place, I'd call it a fair trade-off.

1 Comment:

Mumsgather said...

Both mama and papa are in journalism eh? No wonder I enjoy reading your posts so much. You've just found yourself a new blog fan. :) BTW, thanks for dropping by my blog.