Saturday, 16 May 2009

Babies for Profit

Today I went to a Babies expo, and worked on the HAS stand.  Once again it was a mixture of great talks with people who had either thought about homebirth and needed someone to talk it over, and people walking past saying loudly 'homebirth! are they fucking kidding'.  

When I go to these expos, I am amazed by the amount of peripheral crap they try to sell us when we are getting ready to have our babies.  Today's real eye openers were; 
- The toddler urinal
- The 30+ line of people trying to grab their 50% off bottles
- The amount of devices to help protect your child from touching anything that resembles germs
- And again the most amazing amount of crap that is marketed as 'baby needs'. 

I spent 1/2 the time I was there wanting to grab these women on buying frenzies and tell them that all you really NEED is love and a set of boobs, the lesser needs are a sling, some nappies and some clothes.  

The creams, pushing devices, swinging devices, toys for brain stimulation, bottles, sterilizers, breastfeeding covers, baby sunglasses, feet casting, bottled food, toddler formula, cribs, cradles, cots, pram covers, wraps, sleeping bags, and a hundred other things that people seem to think of as NEEDS are really just excess, some might help, a lot could hinder, and some actually get in the way of you and your baby finding your own rhythms and cycles.

Mothers and children (and fathers to a lesser but no less important degree) really just need each other, babies need to be nurtured and loved, and all of these devices and gimmicks, just get in the way.  The more we feel we need 'things' to complete ourselves and our babies the less we understand and believe that we have everything we need already.

OK, that's the end of my rant, I'm feeling a little emotional tonight, after the expo we went to the open day at one of the schools that we are thinking about sending Jack to next year.  It seemed like a good place, but it made me remember how little Jack is and how unready I feel to take this next step with him, but more about that when I am feeling a little more clear and much less emotional.

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