Sometimes, when all the stars align, the kids will nap all at the same time… and when that happens, I day-dream about simpler times. Ooooh, my early twenties, how I miss you. Back when sleeping 12-hour nights, enjoying meals all to myself and having this crazy thing called “extra spending money” was the norm. I remember seeing other moms out and about with their children and thinking, “wow, my kids will never act like that, can you believe that mom is letting her kids run around screaming,” or “can you believe that mom trying to bribe her child to eat his dinner,” or even worse ” I can’t believe that mom pulled over on the side of the road to let her toddler pee in public.” . I know now, that was my self-righteous, early twenty something’s ignorance. Maybe it was nature’s little joke, but I certainly got the most wild, strong willed children of all time.
This week it hit me in two very big instances that I AM THAT MOM. I had multiple errands to run, and only one free day to do them, so I packed the kids up and we went to about 3 different stores. After shopping with a toddler and an 8-month old, and with a messy kitchen waiting for me at home, I decided to hit a drive-thru for dinner. Let me just say, I have the world’s worst luck in drive-thrus, and this time was no exception. The baby immediately started screaming when the car stopped, and by the time I thought about turning around, another car had pulled up behind us, trapping us in. After a few minutes of bloody murder screaming, we finally get to the order screen. At this point my toddler starts crying and saying he needs to pee…. Of course, my luck…. The woman taking our order couldn’t hear me at all and finally told me to pull forward to place my order… while sitting there trying to reason with my son and regretting my decision not to cook, he starts completely panicking saying “mommy, I no pee in my underweary” (2-year old talk.) Racked with guilt I finally give in and told him it’s ok, we will pee outside. I open up the car and get him out, knowing full well all the cars in line behind me are now watching our every move… my son quickly pulls down his pants, sits down on the curb outside the restaurant, and pees (what had to have been the longest pee this child has ever had)… I desperately tried not to make eye contact with anyone as I (embarrassed as ever) helped him put his pants back on and get back into his seat…
Today, outside my workplace in the mall… I was observing a mom telling her toddler he couldn’t have any candy from the huge display of gumball machines. He immediately erupted into a burst of emotion! The mom did exactly what I would now expect most mom’s in this situation to do. She picked him up and carried him out kicking and screaming. This reminded me of the time I too was at the mall with my toddler… he was playing on a big quarter operated car and when it was time to leave, he lost all control (he also skipped his nap that day). There was absolutely nothing I could do to get him to stop flailing and screaming. It took both myself and my husband to hold this child down and strap him into the stroller. The entire way out of the mall he screamed bloody murder. I was certain someone would think we were trying to kidnap him. Today, as this mom carried her son out, I noticed this young, twenty something girl shaking her head and under her breath she whispered to me , “ugh what I b****, and can you believe how that kid is acting?” At this, I lowered my mask (Don’t worry Karen, I still maintained my social distancing) so she could get the full extent of my mom-face and said, “mind ya business because that’s gonna be you one day.”
Yep, I have become ” THAT MOM.” and you better believe I deserved a coffee and donut for dinner after that day!