i was never very tolerant of people with kids in public places. i’ll admit that. it used to irritate me to hear a crying/whining (and no doubt, smelling bad and full of boogers) short person making a scene. on a plane (WORST), in a restaurant, even at the hospital where i work and i know they were visiting a family member patient and i should have been so compassionate but still i was all like, ‘hey, lady, can you keep your grubby kid off the hospital floor? he might give it some gross germs.’ 🙂
anyway, all that is to say, that i am now ESPECIALLY humbled because strangers are SO nice to us! when we traveled, when we’re out shopping or eating. no one is, obviously, cursing us and, in fact, people are really helpful.
witness tonight at trader joe’s when henry decided life as a henry was just too much for him and he was falling apart as i carried him, boneless and wailing, through the store. people were all helpful ‘can i reach that for you’ and ‘here, let me get out of your way’ instead of all ‘i’m going to choke that kid.’
it’s awesome. go society! it probably is that they’ve all been there before and remember my current situation with some nostalgia. they remember their kids when they were just developing language (“NO!”) and doing adorable things like bashing their heads against the side of the cart to make a point (much like starving oneself for social injustice).
i know that some day not too far from now i will feel the same way. and already i’m less self-conscious than i used to be when he has fits in public. but he’s not saying anything really loud and clear yet. i guess the next phase will be learning how to gracefully navigate a “THAT FAT LADY SMELLS FUNNY, MOMMY!” moment.