Original photo credit: Flickr
Let me first start by saying, that I do not condone physical violence, especially not in front of our children. But, when I read the news tagline about the mother punching a shopper for telling her to quiet her kid, I LOL'd in real life.
I used to be that girl who said "my kids will NEVER act like this in public" or "I can't believe their kid is still screaming, how rude"...I was the most judgmental person when it came to kids behaving badly in public and my husband agreed. Then, I became a mom and the biggest hypocrite EVER! I don't want to spoil your dreams of perfect parenting...but JUST WAIT!
I also said that I wasn't going to be the mom who bought that overpriced mini-sized pack of gummy worms at the check-out stand at the grocery store just to shut them up because they "gotta have it." Yep, check another thing of my pre-parent "we'll never do that" list. Oh, and bribing my kid with a mini-box of Goldfish at Target so she will keep quiet so I can waltz through those wonderful aisles of goodness in silence - check that off too. Because God knows those days of shopping in silence are G-O-N-E when you have kids in tow. Shopping on my own in peace is a mini-vacation these days!
So, while I don't agree with the mom punching the 20 year old in the face for telling her to quiet her screaming kid in the store...I can't say I haven't day-dreamed about doing it.
When I was at the County Recorder’s office getting my son’s birth certificate, I had to hold my composure. There was a new mom waiting in the seats across from me with a newborn and another child that looked no more than 18 months old in a double caboose stroller. We all know how long waiting in line at county offices take and having a soon to be toddler can make the wait seem even longer. The toddler started getting antsy, wanted out of the stroller and started throwing a huge fit. Who wouldn’t when the building was hot as hell with people breathing down your neck?! Poor mom was trying her best to quiet him when the newborn started crying. I could tell she was embarrassed and I smiled a quick smile of encouragement hoping it said, “I’ve been there too, it’s okay.” Then, a man in his mid 40’s huffed and yelled across the waiting area “Woman, please do something.” I was very shocked that he had the audacity to not only call her “woman” but to voice his unwanted opinion out loud. Yes, people might be thinking it, but who says that?! I kept my thoughts to myself. A few minutes went by and he yelled again, “Ma’am quiet your child.” Thats when I had to open my big mouth. I turned around and scowled back at him, “Are you freaking serious?!?!” I turned to the poor mother of two and told her, “It’s fine. You’re fine. He’s fine.” That is all I could say without going off on him. The clerks noticed the commotion and they motioned for the mom to cut in line. She looked like she wanted to cry as she was grabbing her diaper bags and shuffling her papers to get to the front of the line. It would have been a nice gesture for the staff to let her cut in line - except they ruined it by making those raised eyebrows and rolling wide eyes that said, “good god, get this woman out of here.”
I told my husband, who was waiting in the car, what had happened. He said “Thank god I wasn’t in there. I would have probably socked him in the face if he had said that to you. He must not have kids.” Like I said, I don’t condone physical violence, but it was oddly refreshing hearing that coming from him. He used to be even more judgemental and have unrealistic expectations of having perfectly behaved children than I did. Funny how things change.
I fear the day where someone tells me to get my kids under control and tell them to quiet down during the middle of a fit. Because OF COURSE we haven't thought of that already and OF COURSE that isn't what we are ALREADY trying to do. Don’t go stating the obvious now, ya’ hear? Because I might just yell “Thank you Captain Obvious” and give you a much needed hug. In the face. With my fist.
Many Kind Regards,
Katie also dealt with a rude stranger - read how she reacted.
Jessica Linville is a 20-something mom of 2 beautiful kiddos & married to an active duty member of the Armed Forces. Jessica served 6 years as a Paralegal in the CA Army National Guard & is currently in the Army Reserves as a Finance Specialist. She enjoys volunteering with numerous veteran organizations & writing resumes for fun! She loves curling up with a book reading & her 2 German Shepherd dogs, Rhino & Riley. Oh & wine, can't forget wine. She loves a nice glass (or two) of wine.