January 2, 2010

Mother of the Year

Every once in awhile, time will have smoothed over fairly recent memories and make them a rose-colored memory. Today, we forgot what it was like to take our 3 young kids out to eat in a public restaurant and get groceries. We figured it was too cold to play outside and a trip to a pizza place and grocery store would cure the cabin fever that was brewing. We thought "It'll be fun". Yeah, yeah, I know, like I said, time glazed over the reality of eating out with kids. We get to the pizza place and they are, of course, busy, which make our 3 even more excited. After being seated, I realized it could get ugly as Isaiah started fussing before we even ordered...and there weren't any straps on his high chair. But, as seasoned parents of young children, we distracted him enough until the salad came, and yes, all 3 kids ate salad! I was so proud. I thought to myself "yeah, my kids may be loud, but look at that, they are all eating salad! In your face!". Then came more fussing and Isaiah kept wanting to stand in his seat. We would manage to get him sitting again and finally the pizza comes. We're doing alright and we're in the home stretch. *Sigh*, So delusional, so delusional. As we were 2/3 through our meal, Isaiah decides he's ticked for some reason and before we knew it, he had stood up mid-tantrum and did a backflip over the highchair onto the floor. Husband and I moved faster than I thought possible but we couldn't catch him. I did get a hand under his head and really, he didn't fall far or hard, but it looked horrible watching his feet go over his head...of course in slow motion. And the place was full. I was mortified. He wasn't hurt, just scared the crap out of him. Funny, we were all still eating and the waitress handed us our check, and the elderly couple across from us kept glaring at me. It happened so fast, there wasn't anything we could have done. In 60 seconds, Isaiah was back in his seat, happily eating. We finished our meal, and he never tried to stand up again. I can only imagine the whispering and tsk-tsking that went on. But, you know what, it happens. If you think "Nope, that would never happen to me, I'm a good parent, you just weren't paying attention", fate will prove you wrong, so wrong, in a public place no less. Trust me. And we couldn't just go home, we HAD to get groceries, so we wreaked havoc on the poor employees of the grocery store, who seemed to get a kick out of the kids being wild. And, even though I was mortified that Isaiah fell, and so very thankful he wasn't hurt, it wasn't so bad. I figure, let them judge. Let them walk in my shoes, or remember what it's like to have a 2 year old. So if you happened to see a 2 year old back-flip out of a chair tonight, that was just me and my wild family. But next time, I will bring my own restraints...

6 comments:

Diana J. said...

We are in that stage right now! :)

It is SO easy to get judgmental about a stage that is in your past and has been forgotten, or become "rose colored" through the merciful lens of time. My goal is to maintain empathy for young families so that I never become the annoyed and unmerciful older woman "tsk-tsk-ing" because I've forgotten how hard it was to have young children.

Heather said...

We are right there with you too.

We had the looks the other day when I let him take a drink from my empty beer glass.

Beth said...

Ooooh, I can soooo relate with a 2 year old. I do believe in such things as "natural consequences" ~ but glad to hear Isaiah wasn't hurt by his tumble.

Seriously...do people with older or grown children FORGET what life was like with small children?! This weekend @ a wedding out of town (yes, insanity = 3 kids in one hotel room!) I got, "wow you have your hands full!". Um...what does that mean, exactly?


Mother on, Mother on! You're doing a great job, and remember, "this is all temporary"....right?! :)

Cherry said...

Ha, you should have complained that the high chair had no straps! That's a safety violation and is the restaurants fault, not yours! My almost 2 year old has a permanent bruise/knot on his head from falling, crashing, and banging into every possible sharp corner and surface. So I feel your pain! When my daughter was this age her favorite word was OW! and would shout it whenever we were in public places. We had lots of glares from that, especially since my hubby and I would be laughing!

Lct4j said...

The more kids I have (6!), the less I judge. My kids, even with my noblest intentions to teach them good manners, have simply been horrible at times. Oh well. And they have hurt themselves or wandered off because...well, they just did! And I'm considered a very conscientious mother who's "on top of things." Ha! Life goes on and it's amazing what they survive!

Karen said...

I so relate to this! My niece is 14 and my sister enjoys "remembering" that her daughter was never as wild as my two kids. Not necessarily true, but it's so easy to forget reality.

If I can forget in a matter of months, the chaos of taking two small kids out to eat by myself, imagine how much forgetting can take place in 30 or 40 years!
By the time my kids are grown, they'll be well-behaved angels with perfect parents too, I think.
Glad your lo wasn't hurt.