Monday, January 21, 2013
1. A certain family (anonymous, of course) went to church a few weeks ago with their children. One of their little kiddos has a history of respiratory issues and was just getting over a cough. He had been at the doctor just on Friday, so the situation was under control. During the course of the first meeting, he got a tickle in his throat and had a tough time stopping the coughing, even with some little sips of water. After the meeting, some "well meaning" older woman (stranger) came up to us (ehhem, "them") and interrupted a conversation we were already engaged in to tell us the following, "Excuse me, this little boy has whooping cough. I know. I am a nurse. You need to take him to the urgent care immediately. If his chest starts heaving up and down, he will be in terrible trouble. And by the way, this is extremely, extremely contagious." To which I replied, "Thank you. Thank you Sooo much."
2. Another "certain mommy" took her kids to the store to get mucinex, as she felt like she was dying from a cold and her husband was out of town:) It was over 70 degrees outside and her little 10 month old had just kicked off her socks in the car, to which this incredible mommy thought, well, too bad, I'm not putting the socks back on. I'll just run into the store with the kiddos for 3 minutes and get back home before I die from this horrible sickness:) So, in the store along comes "helpful person #2" into her life... Another well meaning older woman who immediately states, "Ohh, what a beautiful little girl! Ohh, where are your socks, poor little girl. Ohh, how sad, she doesn't have any socks on her toes." (THIS scenario has played out on so many occasions I cannot count them anymore, but that doesn't make it sting any less:)
3. Ok, the other situations really aren't my personal situations, so I will publish them in broader terms... Mothers we know are ridiculed, as in the cases above, but also the source of the ridicule. I have seen mother against mother trying to figure out WHOSE KID spread that nasty stomach bug, WHO TOOK THEIR KID to the playgroup sick, WHO LET THEIR KID eat CHEETOS/didn't do their daughter's hair/you get the idea...
AND So.... It has occurred to me we need to BE NICE! That's it. I'm going to BE NICE from now on. I don't think I intentionally try to hurt others around me or demean other mothers, but I'm pretty sure none of the women in the above situations really intentionally meant to hurt the other mothers either. Truly though, why can't we just cut each other some SLACK :) Why can't we just assume that we each are trying our VERY BEST. Sometimes, we do a good job, and other times, we don't. For whatever reason, things just don't always work ideally... maybe we didn't realize how sick our child was, or maybe we didn't have the means to make ideal happen, OR maybe we tried our very best and our children still have their own WILLS and their own WAYS... Whatever the case may be, I want to remind myself to cut myself and everyone around me some slack. Assume the best. We're all trying our hardest. We're not trying to infect each other kids with the latest outbreak, or kill our own kids by not wearing socks, or make our kiddos eat only junk or a million other things... We're just trying our best, and truly, our best will be good enough, in spite of ourselves and everyone around us:)