Rebel Baby has been in a grumpy mood all day and nothing seems to please her. It is her 6 month birthday so Mummy, Daddy and even Big Bro are bending over backwards to try and muster a smile from the little stroppet.
Mummy has been singing all of her favourite songs, feeding her all of her favourite foods, and has excelled herself with an Olympic-standard peek-a-boo performance. All have been met with derision and disdain.
Big Bro has cycled through every toy in the house, leaving a trail of plastic strewn in his wake, in an attempt to please her. Despite hinting at some initial approval, Rebel Baby quickly reverts to swiping and scowling at every offering and trying to pull his face off with her baby-talons.
Eventually, Daddy suggests an exciting walk round a county park so she can lick some fence posts and shout at leaves – two of her very favourite things to do in the world. RB just about tolerates the outing, but with a face that suggests Daddy had lost the plot thinking this is a suitable way to celebrate her big day.
Eventually, beaten and broken, Mummy and Daddy decide to give in to Big Bro’s begging to go to the park on the way home, and plonk the little one in an inappropriate swing for proper-sized children so they can pretend to admire Big Bro’s efforts on the climbing frame whilst discussing whose turn it is to go to the supermarket for wine this evening.
Rebel Baby, it turns out, is a big fan of the inappropriate swing. She laughs and squeals and wants to go higher, drawing disapproving looks from all of the other Proper Parents in the park whose children are playing safely in a well-supervised fashion on age-appropriate apparatus. By the time Big Bro gets in on the action and starts pushing her dangerously high so that Mummy panics she might actually fly out and break her neck, RB is having the time of her life.
Mummy decides to do the responsible thing and extract The Baby from the dangerous swing before anyone calls social services. In the absence of a bench, Mummy sits on the roundabout with The Baby while the boys go to do manly climbing. But Daddy cannot resist giving Mummy a little spin on his way past and in no time at all, Mummy and The Baby are whizzing round at a hundred miles an hour. Mummy loses all sense of balance and wants to get off.
“Stop!” says Mummy, feeling sick.
“Woooooooooooooh!” screams Rebel Baby, throwing her head back in glee and laughing at Mummy for her weakness.
Happy half-birthday, RB. We love you, you weird little thing.