"The most wasted of all days is one without laughter." ~e e cummings

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

mind your manners

Now I know I'm no Emily Post....but sometimes it's not so much a matter of etiquette as it is just plain Being Polite.


The other day, as I was leaving the grocery store with a cart full of groceries and two happy kiddos driving the car cart, an elderly gentleman smiled and said, "My! Don't YOU have your hands full?" Now, I know he was just trying to be friendly, but really? Hands full? Actually, sir, I'm feeling quite hands-free today. See that Wild One in the passenger seat? See how he's strapped in and contentedly honking his horn? We're just fine today. Wanna see my hands full? Come with me to Target. So, yes, I admit it: We have our not-so-pretty moments. And sometimes my hands may be full. But they're full by choice, and I like them that way. If you happen to come across a Mom with her hands truly full, (juggling a slippery toddler hoisted on her hip, balancing an armful of shopping bags on the other side of her growing baby belly, and guiding a preschooler out the door with her elbow, for example) hold the door for her. That's all. She can handle the rest.


Don't tell anyone, at anytime, that she looks tired. Especially if that person is a pregnant mother. She is tired. She knows it. She doesn't need to be reminded of the fact. And besides, she chose babies over sleeping-in and reading the Sunday paper over (hot, not reheated) coffee on purpose. It's a small price to pay.


Can you believe that *four* people on *four* separate occasions have asked me if this baby was "planned or......?" !!! FIRST of all, what's with the trailing off? You're bold enough to question, basically, my birth control responsibility, but you're too shy to say the word "accident?" SECONDLY, this baby was definitely "planned." We have always known that we would love to have At Least Three Kids, and we've been very lucky.  However, if this baby WERE a Happy Surprise, do you really think I'd tell you, Oh, Neighbor I Can't Even Confidently Address By Name Because We Don't Know Each Other? Or, Acquaintance Sitting Next To Me At The Baby Pool? Or, Fellow Mommy In The Mommy and Me Gym Class? Or, Stranger Standing Behind Me In Line At Kroger? Please. And finally, not that this question would EVER be appropriate, but this is my THIRD baby!! Is it really so surprising that families would want more than two children?!

Lesson Learned:
As a basic rule of thumb: If it's none of your business to know the answer, don't ask the question. And if you MUST say something to the Mommy you're walking past, just offer a genuine smile and say, "Your children are beautiful." We all can agree with that.

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