In Praise of Crying Babies
Crying babies are annoying, aren’t they? How many times have you been to a restaurant with the anticipation of enjoying a quiet evening away from the house when, just as you start slicing into that slab of savory steak sitting so perfectly on your plate, your serenity is molested by a blood curling shriek comparable to that of panther. Startled, you look around only to find sitting not more than two tables away is a family with a baby - a baby so pitifully discontent that it yells, wails, and cries, ruining, in effect, your dining experience.
How about movie theaters? Isn’t that even worse? A baby wailing away while you’re trying desperately to figure out who killed the man who was having an affair with the drug lord’s daughter? Or how about church services? “Shut up little tyke, can’t you see I’m trying to focus on God?” Or grocery stores? It takes a lot of concentration to find an apple without any bruises. No matter where we go, we just can’t seem to escape the mouths of babes. They’re everywhere.
But they may not be as everywhere as they once were. People aren’t having as many of them. And people are aborting a lot of them.
It’s not the babies who have changed. Babies have been crying long before slabs of beef were ever served on a plate. Babies cry for a myriad of reasons. They could be hungry. Or uncomfortable. Or in pain. Or cold. Or hot. Or lonely. Or tired. It doesn’t make it right. But that’s what babies do. They complain. It’s really no different than you or me. We’re just more experienced in making our complaints a little less bothersome that the average infant.
There are some families who are still having more than 1.5 children. Some even have (gasp) more than five. There are still many couples who are actually letting their children be born. But there are also many who aren’t. Usually those who aren’t don’t look too kindly upon those who are. Maybe it’s just that babies cry to loud. I don’t know. But common sense tells us that after awhile, those who are still having children will outnumber those who aren’t. Those who don’t want children in the world are killing themselves off. They’re a dying breed.
So next time your pleasures and comforts are interrupted by a fussing babe, remember that it’s because of that fussing babe that life goes on. See the joy in the larger picture. The cry of an infant is the forging of a legacy for those who see it. For those who don’t, it’s the death of them.