This has been happening consistently for some time now. Most days I laugh, some days I wonder whether I should get worried. Anyways, here's a chronological list of comments by some of the co-inhabitants of this island.
1. Age: Day 1 to 4 of life, Location: Hospital, Culprit: Grandma, Nurses, Doctor
All comment: So cute!!! BIG baby...........!!!!
2. Age: 8 days, Location: Home, Culprit: Malaysian Massage lady
Massage lady: She's a big baby, no?
After a pause..."hmm...big baby".
Massage lady (on observing the diaper being changed): She needs a bigger diaper.
3. Age: 3 weeks, Location: Doctor's clinic, Culprit: Doctor
Doctor: Oh.. she's so beautiful. You both are doing really well. I'm proud of you. She's putting on weight which is good. Some babies have a lot of problem and lose weight initially. So well done.
SM: Is she putting on too much weight?
Doctor: No, no. She's just fine. You're doing really well.
SM is wondering if we're doing too well since everyone seems to be commenting on how big Squiggles is.
4. Age: 4.5 weeks, Location: Doctor's clinic, Culprit: A Caucasian grandmother
We're sitting on the sofa waiting for our turn to see the doc. Caucasian grandma and Indian grandma start chatting.
Indian grandma: How old is your baby?
Caucasian grandma: 4 weeks. How old is yours?
Indian grandma: 5 weeks.
Caucasian grandma promptly turns away and starts talking to Caucasian mother in gibberish with frequent furtive glances at Squiggles. Clearly they are comparing their child to Squiggles and finding him sorely lacking. Squiggles is the clear winner (or not).
5. Age: 6 weeks, Location: Lift lobby, Culprit: Chinese Neighbour
Chinese Neighbour: What a lovely baby. How old is she?
Grandma (lying through her teeth and setting a bad example for Squiggles): 2 months
Chinese Neighbour: Oh! Big baby....
6. Age: 7 weeks, Location: Gym, Culprit: Mom's personal trainer
Personal trainer: Was that your daughter with the maid?
Personal trainer: She's about 2 months isn't it? She's quite a big baby.
SM: Yes (and starts pushing weights with more force).
7. Age: 8 weeks, Location: Doctor's clinic, Angel: Doctor
Grandma: Is she putting on too much weight?
Doctor: No, no.. she's fine.
Grandma (persists): How much weight should she have put on by now?
Doctor: About 800gms per 4 weeks and she's in that range.
SM starts calculating... Squiggles has put on 900gms in the last month and a month is a bit more than 4 weeks so... not bad. Phew!
But the saga continues.....
8. Age: 11 weeks, Location: Carrefour supermarket, Culprit: An old chinese man working as a security guard
Security guard shakes his head and smiles at baby. Then brings up his hand making up the sign for the number 4 and then number 5, enquiring how old Squiggles is.
SM (who has also learnt the art of lying by now): 3 months
Security guard nods head smilingly and walks away. SM is convinced he was referring to weeks and not months when enquiring about Squiggles's age.
9. Age 11 weeks, Location: Home, Culprit: SM
Excitedly she makes Squiggles try on this really pretty dress she bought from Chateau de Sable. She finds that the arms are too tight for Squiggles who has started howling by this point. Feeling like a miserable bitch she forces her arm through and realises there is no hope of her wearing this dress ever unless she alters it. Re-checking the label assures her that it's the right size - 3 to 6 months! The dress was exchanged for another sleeveless dress.
10. Age: 12 weeks, Location: Lift lobby, Culprit: Another neighbour
Neighbour: How old is she?
Indian grandma (hesitantly and after a 3 second pause)(lying has now become second nature): 4 months.
Neighbour smiles benevolently.
SM looks at her, waiting for the inevitable any minute. But no comment is forthcoming. There are 2 possibilities -
1. Squiggles is the appropriate size for a 4 month old.
2. Another neighbour is too polite to say anything.
Fervently praying that the first possibility is the case SM walks in to the lift.