The babies have developed a case of stranger anxiety. Women are okay for the most part (though they still do their initial soul-penetrating stare for a good long while) but it seems men now set off some alarm bells.
Last week when we went to the doctor they were fine as long as he was across the room, but the minute he rolled his chair over M started screaming, and Bean quickly followed suit.
It’s flattering that they are so attached to their Mommy and Daddy but that feeling grows old pretty much instantly. As their parent, you want everyone to see the laughing, exploring, world-loving baby you see. Not a crying, snot-bubbling from the nose, fearful and confused baby. Though to be fair, the world is a scary and confusing place sometimes.
I met a new neighbor down the street who is a former police officer. When he saw me with the twins for the first time he looked at them admiringly but kept his distance. He told me he used to work with dogs, and that he also played McGruff the crime fighting dog sometimes at community events. As McGruff he’d don the oversize furry dog head, with huge furry paws over his hands. Parents looking for a photo-op would tell their toddlers, “Go sit with McGruff,” and place them in his lap, but the kids would take one look at McGruff and burst into tears. The lesson he’d learned, he said, is that, “It’s the same with babies and dogs, you let them come to you.”
Of course, with doctors and family you just might not have a choice.