Friday, September 15, 2006

Stroller Rage

Kind of like road rage, more like pedestrian rage (when drivers don't notice you and turn left despite your walk signal, etc. etc.). I took my first walk by myself when Ezra was four weeks old, not coincidentally the first time I experienced stroller rage. Because of the c-section, I couldn't really walk any distance before then. It was the first week on my own and I was terrified he would wake up and start screaming and I would be outside in early March, unable to do anything for him. But I had to submit his birth form or whatever that is to the city. I had almost made it to my destination when some idiot honked. I jumped and glared at the driver and she gestured apologetically that she wasn't honking at me. I gestured back, angrily, indicating that she could have woken the SLEEPING BABY. She looked really apologetic then and my rage waned. Better still, Ezra miraculously didn't wake up.

I found this rage quite curious. I mean, I know that other people are not responsible for Ezra's sleep, comfort and safety. But I found it happening again and again. When someone turning right didn't notice the pedestrian with the stroller (me!) with the right of way. When some idiot squealed his tires trying to look cool. Or someone reving his engine at just the moment we walked past. I even found it happening in our own quiet bedroom when on a hot summer night the giddy sounds of drunken revellers came in through our open window and threatened Ezra's slumber. But mostly it happened when I was walking.

I'd feel personally insulted if a store we entered didn't have aisles wide enough to accommodate the stroller or if the door was really difficult to get through with the stroller (luckily I can steer it with one hand) or if there is an inconvenient step. The buttons for those in wheelchairs are wonderful, which a kindly person pointed out to me after holding the door open for me (I believe it was on that fateful first trip to the city hall). "Aha! Well that is convenient. Sorry, I'm a new driver."

I've always been a pedestrian with attitude, taking my right of way no matter who tries to intimidate me. But it changed with the precious cargo in the stroller next to me. Anyways I've noticed recently that I don't feel it as much anymore. Probably because Ezra doesn't really sleep in his stroller anymore so I don't worry about waking him up. And I'm starting to relax generally where he's concerned. I don't worry as much about him suddenly stopping breathing. I think I also trust myself more to see potential dangers. (I see them all the time: walking next to a railing above a drop I imagine him falling over; when his head approaches a sharp corner on furniture I imagine it splitting open; etc. etc. Who knew that motherhood would invoke such an imagination???)

1 comment:

bubandpie said...

I get the rage when people fire up their chainsaws to trim the trees DURING NAPTIME. Do these people have no children? Don't they realize that 2 pm is a completely unacceptable time for loud noises?