Tuesday, December 18, 2012

#ParentingFail, #EncourageOneAnother, #SandyHookChangedMyOutlook

Sweating, I hastily make my way through the store grabbing the two items that were on my list.  My mother, who fears that someone will call the police because it appears as though she is kidnapping Emmy, drags my child out of the store while she kicks and screams and yells out "Mommy mommy mommy" at the top of her lungs.

It was my fault.  Three years, four months and 9 days into parenting and I still haven't learned that you don't take your child shopping during nap time.

I was THAT parent.  The one that you look at when you yourself aren't a parent, and you sigh.  Yeah, that lady.  The one who is letting her child flail on the floor of the store.  You know, the one who returns a glare for a glare received by judgmental bystanders.  I was doing all those things that would have made me roll my eyes pre-parenthood.

A few lessons learned that day (by me)
1.  Don't take your child shopping during nap time....no matter how happy her mood may be. And certainly do not let her walk instead of riding in the cart
2.  A week ago, I would have been frustrated and wishing this situation on anyone else but myself.  But this week, it is different because of the two words that have echoed through my head and on the news, "Sandy Hook".  This week it still frustrated me, but I found myself thankful that the good Lord let me have another day with my girls.  I realized that there were 20 sets of parents who would, on Saturday at 215pm in Michael's, give anything to be in the midst of disciplining their child because of an outburst and meltdown.

A lesson learned by my mom
1.  It is completely different being a parent now than it was in the 70s/80s.  She told me that in her generation, mothers would have just given one another a pat on the back in the store and said "It's OK honey.  It's something that she will grow out of.  You are doing a great job".  Excuse me, what?  The only thing I heard coming from someone's mouth during my incident was "OH, Good lord....." (to which I made a very un-Christian like reply).  Can you even imagine hearing that in a store in the 2010s??? Those words of affirmation have been replaced by glares, sneers and hurtful words whispered quietly under breath.

There's so much more to be learned from this one little situation but the two that I wanted to remember are that 1) Elementary massacre or not, I need to do the best with every day granted to me and show those around me that I love and care for them. 2) I need to encourage other mothers and fathers and not even say words that could be taken any other way than being positive.

Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, that it may give grace to those who hear.-Ephesians 4:29 

But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called "Today," lest any one of you be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. -Hebrews 3:13 


  1. Love the idea of more moms encouraging each other instead of judging! I can't tell you how many times I've told my mom that parenting is HUMBLING . . . way more than I thought it would be! Just a couple Sundays ago, our preacher was reading the verse "train up a child..." while I was dragging my screaming toddler out into the foyer. UGH.

  2. I don't typically say anything, but if I see situations like that happening in a store, I at least try and give an endearing look of..."it's okay". I do that because I know someday that I will likely be in the exact same situation, and would appreciate an understanding glance rather than a judgmental glare.

    Since being pregnant, I've noticed the major "movement" among mothers of..."I know what I'm doing and I'm doing it better than you." From how to conceive through their college graduation. We're all different and we're all going to parent (and go through pregnancy and birth) differently from one another. It would be nice to have that community of support rather than judgement.

  3. Great post, coming from a NON parent it is easy to judge, though I know parents are juggling quite a bit. Keep up the good work!


I love hearing what you have to say: