Thursday, January 11, 2007

Tutti Fruity

Motherhood is so fascinating to me. The ups, the downs, the experts and quacks, the people that tell you your a great mom and then talk about you behind your back; it is all Never in my life have so many strangers offered unsolicited advice and tried to "help" me when they thought things were going awry. Never in my life have I felt so invaded by outsiders and people who, not knowing me AT ALL, feel the need to tell me how to do something. Motherhood is an adventure in finding oneself; learning exactly how strong or how weak you really are; learning precisely how much crap you can put up with before wanting to throw yourself off a bridge; and learning that what you (or anyone for that matter) think is the right and proper way to do something is rarely ever true when tested in real life.

That said, there is a lot that I do as a mother that I would hesitate to tell other moms. I am pretty sure I'm not alone in this. For instance, I allow my son to have a sippy of milk to go to sleep at night. I know, I KNOW. I hear you screaming - bad, bad mommy. You'll rot his teeth, blah, blah, blah. Thing is, you don't live in my house, you don't have to go through the sleep problems we have had so you have no say. Another one - well, if I can't get Kiddo to sit and eat his dinner, I put a few m&ms on the tray or give him a Popsicle. *gasp* dessert before dinner?!?! Yes. The m&ms/Popsicle get him eating. When they are gone, he eats his food. It doesn't really bother me because I know he eats well and 4 m&ms are not going to ruin his appetite.

Here's one that we all do, when we go to the grocery store I make sure to have plenty of snacks on hand. Some moms buy a cookie or doughnut, I bring raisins or puffs or a cereal bar. It gives him something to do and allows me a relatively fuss free shopping experience.

But yesterday was a little different. We had to go to Wal-Mart to exchange a DVD Kiddo got as a gift (we already had one) and so I purchased a Little Einsteins video. Kiddo LOVES Little Einsteins! He was very excited about seeing the new show and he carried his DVD in a bag out to the car. When I was loading everything else in the back, he handed me his bag. "Are you sure you want to put your show back here?" "Yes Mommy." "Ok, but if you put it back here, Mommy can't reach it until we get home." "Ok Mommy." So I put it in the back, strap him in his car seat and off we go to the grocery store. Before we even get out of the parking lot Kiddo starts pointing behind him and saying "What do want?" I say "what do you want?" and he says "What do you want!" I tell him to answer the question, not ask it and he says "Answer Question!" *sigh* So maybe he's not getting this talking thing after all. ;) This "Who's on First" exchange goes on all the way to the store and by the time we pull in he is hysterical. The crying, the sobbing - I am thinking it will all be ok once he sees the behemoth car shopping carts he loves so much. Nope. Not today. I put him in the cart and we wheel into the store with him crying loudly. People are staring, whispering, giving me that "oh you poor thing" look and worse, the "why aren't you doing anything, can't you see he's upset" look - and honestly it didn't bother me. I tuned him out and went about my shopping, trying to get him involved as I normally do. Help me pick out an apple. What color is the apple? Do you want some raisins or puffs? Your drink? The nice man slicing up pineapple steps out from behind his booth, takes off his plastic gloves and skewers a pineapple slice for Kiddo. "Hey there son, want some pineapple?" nope. He looks at me and says "well, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't!" I know he's trying to help, but I didn't ask nor need it and now Kiddo is mad because a stranger talked to him. So I revert to the tried and true - ignore the child. I round the corner of the produce section and the crying stops. The whining begins. What is it? What do you want? Kiddo has fixated on the one thing that will save the shopping trip. The one thing that will make his sad little world right again. He'll hold it, caress it, run cars over it and love it all through the store until I pay for it and it then becomes useless. It is...
a cantaloupe.

Hmm, should I be calling a therapist? ;)
D :)

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