10 Things That Happen When You Take Your Baby To A Restaurant

10 Things That Happen When You Take Your Baby To A Restaurant

There’s no reason your life needs to stand still just because you’ve had a baby.

You don’t have to waste precious hours staying at home, staring at the same four walls.

The great thing about babies is they are very portable.

Unlike toddlers, who will yell loudly if you attempt to move them, babies can easily be picked up and taken anywhere.

You can take a baby to a restaurant, or a barbecue, or wherever you like – with minimum fuss.

10 Things That Happen When You Take Your Baby To A Restaurant

Babies sleep a lot (not at night, obviously) and they are usually pretty contented as long as they’re with their mama. So now’s a good time to make good use of these baby days.

When you take your baby out to a restaurant for a meal, though, the following things are bound to happen:

#1: Your Pram Will Take Up Half The Restaurant

Restaurants really aren’t designed with modern prams in mind. The average pram nowadays is three times bigger than a family car and really doesn’t fit well inside a restaurant.

Restaurant managers try to cram in as many diners as possible, allowing them to make maximum profit for the space available, so expect a look of fear to wash over your server’s face when he sees you enter the restaurant with a pram that could comfortably house a baby elephant.

There will be a lot of screeching and ‘excuse me’, while he moves tables and chairs to make way for your monstrosity.

#2: Your Server Will Pretend To Like Babies

Some servers probably do like babies. Some might be parents or aunties or godparents who genuinely love babies. Others just want a decent tip at the end of your meal.

You’ll be able to tell quite easily which category your server fits into. A baby fan will ask appropriate baby-related questions, pull funny faces at your baby and talk effortlessly in a high-pitched baby voice.

The other type of server will refer to your baby as ‘it’, ask the baby a question and then actually wait for a response (when do babies start talking again?) and look horrified when your baby blows a giant snot bubble out of one nostril.

#3: People Will Keep Calling You Brave

‘Going out, with a baby? You’re brave!’ That’s all you’ll hear when you mention going for a meal, during the meal and when you discuss the meal at a later date.

It’s such bravery to take your own child with you while you eat food. You are truly an inspiration to the rest of society. Is there anything more terrifying than people telling you how brave you are for doing something you thought was normal?

You’ll spend the whole time worrying something terrible is about to happen. After all, surely people don’t think you’re brave just for taking a baby to a public place. What aren’t they telling you?

#4: People Will Touch Your Baby

When people try to touch your baby in the street, you can walk away. You can pick up your pace, cross the road or run away really fast.

You can’t do that in a restaurant. You’re stuck there until you’ve eaten your fill and paid your bill.

Your baby is vulnerable to the attentions of every other diner. And not far away, of course, there will be a table of grandmas who just love babies and can’t wait to come over and prod yours, while asking you all kinds of questions about sleeping habits.

#5: The Baby Will Need To Be Fed As Soon As Your Food Arrives

After dozing contentedly in his pram as you order and wait for your food, your baby will wake up starving as soon as your meal arrives. It really does smell good, so you have only yourself to blame for that one.

Now you have two choices: you can let your food go cold or eat one-handed. You will, of course, choose to eat with one hand. You will balance the baby across your knee, stuff a nipple in his mouth and try not to drop too much food on him as you lean over him to eat.

#6: There Will Be A Poosplosion

Even if you’ve never experienced one before, it is inevitable as soon as you go out for a meal. The fancier the meal, the bigger the explosion will be.

If you’re eating in McDonalds, it will be a mere follow-through after a particularly violent gust of wind. If you’re at a Michelin star restaurant, the pram will overflow with a mess that will splatter onto the shoes of other diners.

Poosplosions tend to happen just as dessert arrives. Your dessert will be something that resembles the nappy contents so you will struggle to enjoy your long-awaited pudding.

#7: The Baby Change Area Will Not Be Good

As you rush your baby away to deal with the disaster, you will discover there is no baby changing room. You will waft the other diners with the offending smell as you carry your baby to the ladies’ toilet in search of a baby changing area.

When you find it, the facilities will consist of nothing more than a stained changing mat propped up against the wall. You will find yourself kneeling on the toilet floor, deep in poosplosion, scraping poop from between your child’s shoulder blades.

You might have been wearing fancy clothes, and eating fancy food in a fancy restaurant, but it will not be a fancy meal experience. Nothing involving poop is fancy. Ever.

#8: People Will Compliment Your Baby For Being So Good…

Babies don’t have to do much to get a compliment. I don’t cry all the time, either, but I’ve never been praised for it. Not that I’m bitter.

Strangers will overlook the whole public poosplosion thing and come over to congratulate your baby on being so good. ‘What a good baby,’ they will say, ‘not even a peep!’ They will compliment you as well, as though you have some control over your baby’s crying.

#9: … Which Will Make Your Baby Cry

Praise is just too much pressure for one so small. Nobody wants to be congratulated halfway through achieving something. Better to wait until the end and then it doesn’t come across as added pressure.

Your poor baby will buckle under the strain of continuing to be ‘good’ (aka quiet) and will immediately put his lungs to good use.

#10: You’ll Spend A Lot Of Time Standing Up

Luckily, your baby is easily soothed by the classic ‘stand up and slowly rock from side-to-side’ move. Ok, it makes you look demented, and it’s not exactly ideal for your dining partner, who is now sitting alone under a constantly swaying shadow, but it stops the baby crying, so it’s worth it. You are more than willing to stand there swaying for the rest of the meal if that’s what it takes to keep your baby happy.

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Fiona Peacock is a writer, researcher and lover of all things to do with pregnancy, birth and motherhood (apart from the lack of sleep). She is a home birth advocate, passionate about gentle parenting and is also really tired.

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