One unexpected perk of having a baby is the way that people look in your direction when you are out for a walk. Normally when out for a walk or a stroll, people may glance in your direction and maybe give you a polite wave or a smile. More often in my experience, people will just kind of look at me, sometimes stare or glare in my general direction.
I don't blame them. After all, if I am walking around someone's neighborhood, they would want to see and know who is walking around outside or near their house. I do the same thing when I see people walking around outside my house. Rarely do I wave. I will mostly observe for the sake of security.
I am more likely to smile and wave if the people walking by have a child, especially a baby, with them. This is even more true now that I have a baby of my own, and this is the same way most people will regard my little family's presence in their neighborhood.
My wife and I like to go for walks outside of our little townhouse complex and we often hop over to the larger townhouse complex next door to get in our steps, it's safer to walk there than on the main road, and because the sense of community you get there.
Nowadays there are so many smiles and compliments thrown in our general direction.
"What a cute baby! How many months old? I didn't even know you were pregnant!" People can be so friendly, that I had to ask/yell at some old woman who was so excited to see my baby that she walking right up trying to touch. Nope, she is young and we are still living through a pandemic. I'm sure her intentions were good but keep your hands to yourself
I know they are all meant for the little one and my amazing wife, but since I am standing so close to the two of them, I benefit from the fringe effects of the smiles and compliments. People seem to be much more comfortable with us walking around seeing that we are a young family with a little one that we are bringing along for the ride.
Most of the time I am not even carrying our baby, my wife will have the baby strapped in a carrier for most of the walk simply because I run hot and she is cooler. Haha yes, she is cooler in both temperature and style, but THAT is a topic for a different article ;)
Honestly, even with all the newfound attention that I am getting by hanging with my cool wife and kid, my favorite part is still just watching my little one take in all of her surroundings. Seeing the reflection of the sky in her little, yet somehow huge eyes. Watching those same eyes go wide when she sees a dog. Seeing her so calm and enjoying the cool breeze while my wife and I shield her from the sun and try to capture her smiles on camera.
Eventually, she will drift off to sleep if the walk is timed well enough and all of the other basic needs are met (diaper, milk, etc). All the while my wife and I keep on walking, keeping her safe sheltered as we enjoy another walk around our neighborhood.