Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Day Seventy-Five

Grocery Shopping and rude old ladies...

Today we got out and went to Trader Joes.  My original intent was to get to Whole Foods as well but I just wasn't feeling up to it.  My stomach has been a mess for days and I've just felt awful.  While we were at the store I was browsing the coffee section, minding my own business.  I heard an old lady (late sixties maybe older) saying Hi to Ava.  At first I didn't pay her any attention because I figured she would just keep going since they normally do.  Well I noticed she was attempting to get me to turn around so I did so and smiled.  The lady then proceeds to say to Ava, "look what someone has done to your hair", in the rudest tone.  Well at this point I was puzzled because her hair was in adorable piggies.  She then looked at me disgusted and said " I probably shouldn't say this because you aren't going to like it".  Now this is the part where I should have said then how about you just not say it but part of me was intrigued and part shocked by what was proceeding.  She continueD to ask me how I would feel if Ava were to do that to my hair and lecture me on how cruel it is and blah blah and so on.  I attempted to brush it off with a comment about how unruly it is if it isn't done and she still kept going.  I really wish I could move past the whole have to be nice because she is old crap that I was taught.  I just couldn't do it.  I couldn't tell the anti-piggy tail old biddy where she could go and what she could do when she got there.  I imagine her to be some miserable lonely old woman but the scarier thought is that this woman is someones mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and I pity those people.

Now I guess she should have called Child Protective Services on me for putting my daughters hair in piggys.  O for shame...I should be embarrassed that I could be so cruel.  I mean really who goes up to perfect strangers and says things like that.  Maybe if I was one of those real piece of works that is always going out and getting drunk instead of being with my child and letting other people be responsible for my child.  It's actually a pretty common trend these days but nope, I will not be caught dead in that crowd.  One thing is for sure...from here on out every time I put my daughters hair in piggys I will be reminded of that obnoxious old lady.  Here is to hoping she one day says something similar to a Mother who doesn't have the same ideas about respecting their elders.

After such a day as today I needed to treat myself to some TJ's dark chocolate and hot tea.  I even allowed myself two extra squares because it was that kind of day.

Edited to add...

A Mom on my Mom forum posted this today and I had to share.  It was sent to her in an email and I think it's perfect.

Being A Mom

We are sitting at lunch one day when my daughter casually mentions that she and her husband are thinking of "starting a family."

"We're taking a survey," she says half-joking. "Do you think I should have a baby?"

"It will change your life," I say, carefully keeping my tone neutral.

"I know," she says, "no more sleeping in on weekends, no more spontaneous vacations."

But that is not what I meant at all. I look at my daughter, trying to decide what to tell her.

I want her to know what she will never learn in childbirth classes.

I want to tell her that the physical wounds of child bearing will heal, but becoming a mother will leave her with an emotional wound so raw that she will forever be vulnerable.

I consider warning her that she will never again read a newspaper without asking, "What if that had been MY child?"

That every plane crash, every house fire will haunt her.

That when she sees pictures of starving children, she will wonder if anything could be worse than watching your child die.

I look at her carefully manicured nails and stylish suit and think that no matter how sophisticated she is, becoming a mother will reduce her to the primitive level of a bear protecting her cub.

That an urgent call of "Mom!" will cause her to drop a soufflé or her best crystal without a moments hesitation.

I feel that I should warn her that no matter how many years she has invested in her career, she will be professionally derailed by motherhood.

She might arrange for childcare, but one day she will be going into an important business meeting and she will think of her baby's sweet smell.

She will have to use every ounce of discipline to keep from running home, just to make sure her baby is all right.

I want my daughter to know that every day decisions will no longer be routine.

That a five year old boy's desire to go to the men's room rather than the women's at McDonald's will become a major dilemma.

That right there, in the midst of clattering trays and screaming children, issues of independence and gender identity will be weighed against the prospect that a child molester may be lurking in that restroom.

However decisive she may be at the office, she will second-guess herself constantly as a mother.

Looking at my attractive daughter, I want to assure her that eventually she will shed the pounds of pregnancy, but she will never feel the same about herself.

That her life, now so important, will be of less value to her once she has a child.

That she would give herself up in a moment to save her offspring, but will also begin to hope for more years, not to accomplish her own dreams, but to watch her children accomplish theirs

I want her to know that a cesarean scar or shiny stretch marks will become badges of honor.

My daughter's relationship with her husband will change, and not in the way she thinks.

I wish she could understand how much more you can love a man who is careful to powder the baby or who never hesitates to play with his child.

I think she should know that she will fall in love with him again for reasons she would now find very unromantic.

I wish my daughter could sense the bond she will feel with women throughout history who have tried to stop war, prejudice and drunk driving.

I want to describe to my daughter the exhilaration of seeing your child learn to ride a bike.

I want to capture for her the belly laugh of a baby who is touching the soft fur of a dog or cat for the first time.

I want her to taste the joy that is so real it actually hurts.

My daughter's quizzical look makes me realize that tears have formed in my eyes.

"You'll never regret it," I finally say.

Then I reached across the table, squeezed my daughter's hand and offered a silent prayer for her, and for me, and for all the mere mortal women who stumble their way into this most wonderful of callings.