Friday, March 25, 2005

My mother is enjoying some serious payback

Last night I had to stop at the grocery store to pick up a few items. I had signed up to bring veggies to the daycare's Easter celebration today so at the very least I needed to get veggies. As we walked into the store, my son ran to one of the carts that has the cute little car on the front. You know, the ones where they can sit in the car and pretend to drive while you push them down the aisle? He immediately started whining because half of the buckle restraint (or "seat belt" if you will) was missing. And since it was the only car cart available, I told him that if it was going to bother him that much (and trust me, it would have) we would just use a regular cart. And that was my first mistake. I tried not to let the fact that my 3 year-old was following about 10 feet behind me sobbing loudly and pointing and yelling, "NO! THAT one!" bother me, but people were staring, and you know they were judging me. I could see the looks on their faces that said, "What did she do to that kid," "Can't you control him," and the classic "If that was my kid I'd..." It should be noted that I tried to reason with him. I remained calm. I got down on his level and spoke in calm tones and tried to tell him that it was silly to keep crying about the cart. None of it worked. So I moved on and went to the next aisle while he followed me crying. And even though every freaking nerve in my body was screaming to just walk out of the store and leave him there, I remained calm and walked slowly so he could keep up. That's when I made my second mistake. I should have gone immediately to the checkout with the veggies and left. But no, I stupidly thought I could go ahead and pick up a few more groceries. He'll calm down, right? Wrong. As I was trying to pick out a bag of pasta, I noticed that someone was coming down the aisle and my son was going to be blocking the way, so I gently took his arm and moved him aside. He acted as if I had beat him and started screaming and crying even louder. Of course, then people were staring even more and I was thinking "Any minute now DHS is going to arrive because I'm sure they've already been called, and they're going to take him away because he is surely being abused, and then I'll have to get a lawyer and go to court to get him back, and do I even want him back? Of course I do - don't be silly." So finally (FINALLY) I decide we should probably leave. We don't need groceries that badly after all. He cries all the way to the checkout and when we get there, he notices that the checker has balloons and he has the nerve to say, "Mama, I want a balloon." Um, gee, let me think about that. I told him, "If you had been a good boy while we shopped, I MIGHT have bought you a balloon. But you cried and acted ridiculous so no, I'm NOT getting you a balloon. Maybe next time you'll act a little better." (I'm still trying to make sure people realize I'm not a bad mom and he's not abused.) So, of course, he cried all the way out to the car then because he didn't get a balloon. And I will probably have to find a different grocery store...


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