4 Things Newborns and Jello Have in Common

Mother holding a newborn

Newborns are kind of weird. Adorable, yes. Precious and wonderful. But also, pretty strange. You know what else is strange? Jello.

Don’t be offended, just go with me here. And for the record, I’m a fan of both infants AND jello.

Here are 4 ways that babies remind me of gelatin:

  1. The obvious one is the wiggles!

Jello is famous for it’s jiggly nature, and babies are just as squirmy.

From the weak neck muscles that lead to floppy heads, to the  lack of bodily awareness, babies always seem to be flailing about.

This is why swaddles are so helpful, and as a postpartum doula I’m often reassuring new parents through that first bath.  


  1. Both babies and jello (and goldfish, I think), expand to fill their containers.

Think about it: this tiny human takes up an entire nursery, space in its mother’s room to sleep and still more space in the family room where they may be a pack ‘n play or bassinet. They took over your uterus, moving organs around to suit them, and then conquer your lap, arms  and possibly your breasts.

That’s saying nothing of the way that a baby can seem to take up your entire day, just by lying there, being squishy, and cute, and needing things.


Just like jello will take up as much tupperware as you allow it to, a baby knows no limits on the amount of time and space it will claim as its own.  


  1. Just like jello, we not only allow this, but encourage it. In fact, just as we leave jello on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator as it sets, not daring to disturb it, we go to great lengths to leave babies be.


Postal workers, visitors and siblings are all cautioned not to upset the little one. Entire months are rearranged to suit  their schedule.

From the moment they arrive, newborns pretty much run the show.

  1. But in spite of (and sometimes because of) all of these qualities, like I said, I’m a fan of both babies AND jello. Despite their quirks, they’re both awesome.

I don’t know who the first person was to invent gelatin, but they were pretty brilliant.

And we all know that babies are little miracles of human potential.

So the next time you’re trying to bathe your squirmy little human, or wondering where your day went, just chuckle to yourself, and let it go.

Remember, it’s not you or your baby’s fault that they’re pretty much as predictable as jello.

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