A few weeks ago, I braved the grocery store with my two year old. I should mention this is the two year old who would rather fling herself out of the cart and on to the concrete floor than sit and enjoy the ride. See the dilemma? But for some reason, I tell myself every time that “this trip will be different.” Ahem.
Anyway. As I had just accomplished checking out, my ears were greeted with terrible, blood curdling screams. I looked over and saw, bless her heart, a young mom who was trying to manage her THREE little boys who were ALL throwing royal tantrums.
At the same time, the couple who was checking out behind her exchanged a look and appeared to be completely distressed because they, of course, were way more put off by this lady’s kids than the lady herself.
Everything inside of me was screaming to go help this poor mom but my little girl was getting restless and was also on the verge of a breakdown. I tossed the mom an encouraging smile and hurried out the door.
I have been kicking myself about that ever since.
Tonight I was browsing through Facebook and came across not one, but TWO stories that left me feeling uplifted and recommitted, not as a mom but as a fellow mom to other moms.
The first was a post about a mom who had been waiting in the post office line for quite some time with her busy toddler. The lady standing in front of her, who had been waiting for just as long, let her go ahead in line because she could see her little boy was getting antsy.
The second was from a mom who had braved dinner at a restaurant with herself and her three kids. She walked over to grab some napkins when her little boy knocked over his drink. A mom nearby immediately jumped up to help her out.
Nothing monumental. But I’m sure those simple acts of kindness and compassion meant a lot to those moms who benefited from the proactive fellow moms.
I wrote this post mostly for myself as a reminder. Because I want to be a more proactive, helpful, fellow mom rather than the onlooker who merely offers a smile.
They say you shouldn’t judge someone if you haven’t walked in their shoes. In this case, you shouldn’t judge someone if you haven’t walked in their shoes while dragging a screaming, snorting toddler, a cart full of groceries, wearing yesterday’s mascara and snot covered tshirt.
But we as moms, of course, HAVE walked in those shoes and know how helpless it can feel.
So whadya say? Take the challenge with me and this holiday season, be a more proactive fellow mom.