We are only a few weeks into our new life in the Big Apple. Already, I’ve encountered situations that had never crossed my suburban-mom mind.
Some differences are a welcomed change. I love not having to finagle the babies in and out of car seats, eliminating an inconvenient middle step to every outing. My friend Meredith texted a few days ago to lament that on the drive home from her trip to IKEA, her twins fell asleep in their carseats. A common problem with transporting babies and toddlers home in carseats. Mine fell asleep almost every time they sat in a carseat. This can mess up the entire day’s schedule. Yes, it’s true, I no longer have to deal with this particular problem. But I must admit, when her text came through my mind immediately grabbed hold of one word: “IKEA, IKEA, IKEA”, taunting me, it danced in my head like a bright, neon sign.
I miss being able to hop in the car and drive to places like IKEA. On the one hand it’s a relief to not have to rely on my car to run simple errands (Duane Reade is right across the street, and the grocery store one block away). But on the other hand, having a car that’s your own allows for a lot of freedom that I took for granted in my previous life as a suburban mom (such as driving to a store that’s not right around the corner, or even on this island, for that matter, like IKEA and Nordstrom).
Additionally, there’s the whole apartment life thing. Namely, no yard for the kids to run around and expend their boundless energy in. Granted, we live a few blocks from one of the most famous yards in the country, Central Park, but there’s something to be said for having an enclosed yard right behind your house, complete with child-proof-locked fence, especially when you’re outnumbered by your kids.
Another thing I miss? The fawning. Everywhere I went in Dallas, my babies were fawned over. “Ohh how cute! Twins??” “Wow! You have your hands full, but they are soo adorable!” Etc, etc. I always brushed off the fawning with a hand wave. “Oh gosh, Thanks! You’re too kind!”
But if this is the city that never sleeps, it’s also the city that never fawns. I can count on one finger the number of times my babies have been fawned over by a passerby here, and it was from a fellow twin mom. I get it. New Yorkers certainly aren’t known for their warmth and kindness, and this city has bigger fish to fry (but somebody notice my adorable babies for pete’s sake!).
Actually, I think I have an inkling as to why nobody notices babies around here. There’s this thing called the foot muff that is attached to every stroller here, and it’s a bit of an eyesore. If you live in Dallas, you never have to worry about such nonsense. But in the winter on the east coast, you see them everywhere. It’s hard to discern that there’s even a baby hidden in the black caterpillar-like foot muffs of most strollers that fly past you on the streets of New York.
I will say though, the people-watching in NYC is second-to-none, and it’s not just for the enjoyment of adults. P&G are absolutely silent as we glide through the streets, taking in every person, child, building, colorful sign, street cart and naked cowboy (kidding. We haven’t passed him yet). Despite all of the inconveniences and nuances, I am so excited for P&G to grow up with this city as a backdrop.
More on our new urban adventures to come….