I know every single mother has been there. Their kids, just being kids, making noise and being wild in public. I used to be embarrassed by the loudness and, honestly, I didn’t want to leave the house if I could help it. It seemed as if everyone was looking at me, like they’d never been a child themselves. Like their mothers never toted them around the grocery store, with mismatched clothes they picked for themselves.
The worst is when you’re in a moment of complete frazzledness and someone comments by saying, “Wow, you’ve got your hands full”. It feels like they’re implying you can’t handle the children you have and I don’t like it. Not one bit.
Nearly 2 years ago, I was in the grocery store with a 3 year old and a newborn. I was in the checkout line when the baby suddenly realized he was starving and the 3 year old was having a meltdown over the candy he wanted to eat right then. A little lady, who had to be in her 80’s started a conversation with me. She must have not been able to quite make out the sheer panic or sweat beads on my face. I was mortified, but she didn’t seem phased.
She rubbed my fussy baby’s hand and said “Children are such a gift. You are so lucky.”
I didn’t even know how to respond. Although I agreed with her, I couldn’t even believe what had just come out of her mouth. I was prepared for the normal. The negative. The positive was a breath of fresh air. Just what I needed to get through the line without shedding a tear.
I haven’t forgotten about that lady and about how her words–probably forgotten by her–meant so much to me. I wonder if she’d ever had children and was just reminiscing about their childhood days. What if she wasn’t able to or regretted not have children at all? Whatever the case, she spoke words that were life to me. Not the words many others would have spoken. She changed not only my day, but nearly every day I take my kids out in public.
A small action can be enough to change someone for much more than that moment. Let’s join together and use our words to make the world a better place.
‘The Best Part’ by Folgers is an online community that’s dedicated to brightening your day—every day. How? By spreading optimism, one share at a time. The Best Part posts inspirational stories, encouraging quotes, good news and other upbeat items on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram—and encourages fans and followers to share that optimism with their friends. Because when optimism is shared, it grows, making an even more positive impact on our world. Check out what others are sharing on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.