Once you have a baby, pushchairs quickly become one of life’s little essentials and trying to find the right one to fit every eventuality will slowly drive you crazy.
Love them, or hate them, when you’re a parent you’re almost certainly going to have to use a pushchair at some point in your parenting journey.
Personally, I love mine. It’s a great place to hang jackets and jumpers, chuck all the shopping and store drinks and snacks when we’re out.
It’s also a great place to put a sleepy toddler who’s done too much walking and is in desperate need of a nap.
Pushchairs are great, but when you start using one, you do start to slowly notice that the whole world is seemingly against you.
The simple things that you took for granted before, suddenly aren’t that easy to do anymore.
Who would have thought that having a quick stroll around town for the afternoon would be full of so many obstacles?!
With that in mind, I thought I’d have a bit of a rant today and get everything off my chest!
Here are the 12 things that annoy me the most about being out with a pushchair (and yes, some of them are totally my fault):
Waiting in a busy shopping centre for a lift that seems like it’s never going to turn up can get frustrating, but not as frustrating as when it finally does turn up and a group of 15 teenage girls walks out that could very easily have used the stairs.
You just know that the lift has been going up and down above you, ferrying people about, while you’ve been waiting (almost) patiently for your turn.
It is a tricky one because lifts aren’t just for pushchair users, and you don’t want to shout at some poor person that can’t actually use the stairs for whatever reason, but you also don’t want to stand there with a crying baby that needs changing while everyone ignores the stairs and hangs out in the lifts for fun.
I get it because I’ve been there. It’s a Saturday afternoon, you’ve been out all day and you’d much rather walk straight through the automatic door and avoid the effort of going for one of the stupidly heavy shop doors.
What isn’t fine is when I walk up to the automatic doors with a pushchair and have to wait for half an hour because about a million people are all trying to come out at once.
Before long, I always give up waiting and head for one of the other doors. I then have the whole opening it with my bum and trying to get the pushchair in before it swings shut and clips the wheels scenario to deal with.
Groups of people
Don’t you just hate those groups of people that insist on walking 4 abreast on the smallest section of the path? The groups that are strolling along, chatting away to each other and not taking any notice of what’s going on around them?
I don’t expect other people to go in the road, definitely not, but if they could hop into a doorway while someone with a pushchair goes past that would be great.
I would do it myself but pushchairs don’t generally fit in doorways.
This one is generally worse in the spring and autumn when there’s a lot of nature about, especially if you like woodland or countryside walks.
You’re happily walking along minding your own business when suddenly one of the pushchair wheels starts dragging and won’t move properly. Bending down, you find that you’re now bringing half the hedgerow along for a walk with you.
Note to self – City pushchairs are not made for the countryside.
I love going to parks and children’s play areas with Cupar, but why are the gates always so hard to open?
Ok, I do know the answer to this one… They’re made that way so that the little ones can’t open the gate and run off into the sunset. But that doesn’t mean that they should be hard for everyone to open, especially those of us with pushchairs.
Most of them towards you when you’re coming up to the park, which invariably means that when you approach one on your way in, you have to turn round and take the pushchair in backwards.
Parent and child spaces
Have you ever tried getting a baby or toddler out of the car and into the pushchair in the middle of a busy car park in a space that isn’t made for parents? I have, many times, and it’s not easy.
I’ve narrowly avoided denting a lot of cars while trying to squeeze through the very small gap with a small wriggling child in my arms.
This is why parent and child spaces were invented.
I see a lot of people using them when they don’t have children with them, and I always say to Aeron that I’ll give them a piece of my mind when we get to their car.
In reality, though, I just stare at them quietly while I walk back to my car on the other side of the car park, ready to hoist me and the toddler through the boot and into our seats so I don’t scratch any other cars.
Cars parked on paths
How annoying is it when a car or van is parked on the path and has only left you a small gap to get through?
When you have a pushchair with you, this sort of frustration makes you want to get your pen and paper out and leave whoever it was that did it an angry note on their windscreen.
People stopping and leaning in
People love babies, and when you’re out with one you will almost always encounter one of those way too enthusiastic old ladies that jumps at the chance to try and get their attention!
I don’t mind if you have a little look, but please don’t lean right in, grab his hand and say ‘Oh aren’t you cute’, and then get offended when he cries.
People walking into the pushchair
Believe it or not, I’ve had this happen more than a few times!
You’re walking along, minding your own business when suddenly BAM, somebody who isn’t looking where they’re going walks straight into the pushchair, trips on it and then looks at you like you’re the one in the wrong!
Has anyone ever tried to take their pushchair through a revolving door? If you haven’t, then don’t. It’s just not worth the hassle!
As you’re walking up to the door, you’re always sure the pushchair will fit. It definitely looks big enough from a distance. Getting closer you realise that you’re actually not too sure, but you’re going to go for it anyway.
Feeling confident with your decision, you get halfway round and then realise that no you don’t fit and you’re now bumping the door and causing it to stop every 5 seconds, which makes the whole process take 10 times as long.
Embarrassed, you realise that you’re now THAT person. The one everyone is staring at and silently wondering why you even attempted it in the first place.
As with the revolving doors above, I realise that it’s totally my fault if I go into a shop that isn’t made for a pushchair, find it doesn’t fit and then have to back my way out while mumbling that I didn’t want to buy anything anyway.
A good tip is to always stick your head in and have a quick look at the shop layout before happily rushing straight in.
It will save a lot of problems.
Bumpy roads and sleeping babies do not mix. Sometimes Cupar sleeps through them, and sometimes he doesn’t, but I always panic when I get to one!!
If you’re unlucky enough to find one sprawled out in front of you when the baby is fast asleep, you’re then faced with the choice of attempting to hold the pushchair in such a way that it hovers over the bumps, or trying to cross the road that is suddenly as busy as the M6 to get to the smooth path on the other side.
I always try to hold the pushchair up just enough that the suspension takes most of the bumps, which seems to work, but I can only do it for so long before my arms get tired.
What obstacles have you found while you’ve been out with a pushchair?
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