Hey, cool mom at Target,
I saw you today, with your adorable little one in her bonnet. I’m partial to bonnets myself – nothing sweeter on a baby than a ruffly little bonnet! Anyways, I saw that sweetie pie bat her eyelashes at you and then totally. lose. her. stuff. And I saw you buckle her into the cart, calm and cool, and walk right out of Target.
No cashier flustered you. No side-eye from the people in the checkout line frazzled you. No melting popsicles or cooling-down rotisserie chicken or hope for Starbucks able to rush you along.
You kept your cool while your kid was wailing her brains out so basically, you’re my hero.
I’m the one turning red at the thought of someone evil-eying me. I’m the one with the racing heart throwing her stuff into the cart and wishing the floor would open and put me out of my misery. I’m the one with a snappy mouth, barking at my kids to climb back in and let me finish paying. Because some days, I make things all about me and not about my kids. I worry about myself and how people will perceive me more than I pay attention to what my little people need at that moment. And maybe some days you do the same thing.
But today, you were my hero.
Today, you showed me that it’s possible to keep your wits together while in public with a couple of melting-down kids. Today, you chose your kid. You kept your cool. You didn’t give a rat’s patootie what we all thought, and you, your kids, and we were all better off for it.
Next time I’m in your shoes, I’m going to think of your topknot (seriously. so cute.) as you walked out of the store, and I’m going to channel that mom steel. I’m going to think of your screaming baby in that darling bonnet and remember that ZERO people gave you the side eye. ZERO cashiers rushed you through to get you out of there. ZERO other shoppers judged you.
It was as if you knew all of that, as you grabbed your toddlers’ hand and led him and the cart full of crying baby out. You even walked at your own unhurried pace. I mean. How cool are you?!
So thanks, other mom at Target. You may have walked out to a minivan full of wrappers and crumbs, arrived at a house exploded with laundry and last weeks dishes, and your kid may not have stopped crying until they fell asleep. Someone may have wet right through their diaper in the carseat. Someone else may dump their milk at dinner tonight. You might be sitting in the hallway right now as I write this, trying with all your might to get your kids down for bed.
But lady… you’re a wonder. And today you inspired another mom to aim for gentleness, peace, self-control, love, kindness and goodness. All these fruits may grow in me because I got to see the way in which they first grew in you. Thanks.
The really tired mom over an aisle at Target
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I'd love to meet you over a picket fence in our backyards with a cup of coffee and a good story. We'd talk real life, real motherhood, and real encouragement.