So I’m pretty sure every parent has one of these. That low point when your kids embarrass you so badly you want to crawl in a hole. There are the minor infractions such as when your child asks the woman with a man’s haircut at the grocery store if she is a boy or a girl. Oh, from the mouths of babes. While quite humiliating, it’s an innocent question that meant no harm from an inquisitive toddler trying to figure out the world around them. But then there are the doozies. The kind that you swore would never, ever, ever happen to you, because somehow you’d be awesome at this parenting thing and have your kids totally under control!
Brogan gave me my first (and hopefully last… one can hope) doozie. Let me set the stage – Brogan was a couple of months shy of 2, I was about 7 months pregnant with Beckett. I went against my better judgment and took Brogan out to dinner solo, and without the assistance of a stroller. Dinner went as well as could be expected and then it was time to pay. This was a place where you pay your check at the counter. So there I was tightly holding the hand of my youngster as he’s wiggling and trying to make a run for it. I keep holding, trying with my other hand to remove my wallet from my purse, give my card, sign my receipt when the little escape artist succeeded and bolted for the door. Without hesitation, I run after him, catch him 6 feet from the door and try to scoop him up. But what does he do? Drops to the ground like dead weight. I lean down to get him, when conveniently everything in my purse spills out. And to add insult to injury (or vise versa), he slaps me across the face. Yes, that’s right – there is a first time for everything and lucky me the first time my sweet little boy hit me was in front of an audience. Oh and wait, the audience included a couple from down the street (that I don’t know well). You think you’ll know what to do in these situations, but I didn’t. I was mad, embarrassed, pregnant, looking totally out of control of my son – which I was. For those people who think a kiddie-leash is inhumane, let me give you my child for a while and then also give you the finger. I could have really used one. Thank God for people who are warm in these situations. A man who had a front row seat to the show looked at me and said, “I have two boys and trust me, I’ve been there.” I will never forget that gesture of kindness and I have made a point since then to speak out to other parents when I see them in a similar struggle.
But you know, what goes around comes around. I’m looking forward to the day – maybe in middle school, perhaps in high school – when my son has the nerve to say I embarrass him. I will chuckle smugly, tell him this (and probably many more stories) and not feel bad – at all!