“Your baby hates me,” you proclaim as you hand her back to me, gingerly, as if she may spontaneously combust at any moment. I giggle awkwardly as I receive my child. I never know quite how to respond to that proclamation in the moment, as many times as I’ve heard it.
My baby doesn’t hate you. Please do not feel awkward and offended that she took one look at you and immediately the corners of her lips traveled downward and her eyes started welling up. It was nothing personal. She is still learning about this big bad world and social conventions might be a little beyond her ken at this point in her life. As far as I can tell, her whole world revolves around mama, daddy, and big sisters. Everyone else is strange and scary. She is too little to know any better.