I’m sure you’re familiar with this scene.
You come out of the grocery store and everyone is standing at the door, or under the overhang, pleading with the rain to stop. Hearing it begin while you’re checking out seems like a cruel joke. You were so close. The only thing worse than having to book it to your car with a cart full of groceries and then return your cart, is having to do that with kids in tow.
I had a little trip to Costco recently that went down just like that. Thankfully, my sister was kind enough to stay home with the boys while they napped so I was flyin’ solo. As I stood under the overhang with many other people, some with umbrellas, some without, I noticed a young mom with a little boy about 2 years old, and 3 ginormous pumpkin pies which she was unloading from her cart and precariously trying to hold. (Has anyone seen how huge the pies are from Costco?!)
I overheard an older woman ask this mom if she was parked close and then offer to let her use her umbrella. After declining with the reason that she couldn’t hold everything and finagle the umbrella, the older woman offered to walk out with her. Young mom still declined saying she’d be alright. The lady with the umbrella headed out and the young mom still hung back. I asked if she wanted to just stick her kid in my cart and I’d wheel him out while she carried the pies. She, again, declined. I realized I may seem like a creeper so I told her I have 3 little boys and laughingly said it might be better than his shoes and pants getting soaked. Still, she declined.
So then she heads out, balancing three huge pies in one arm, along with her wallet and keys, and holding her son’s hand with the other hand. Then he tripped, and she dragged him through a puddle. Just as they got to the car, there was a huge clap of thunder and that poor little kid’s cries turned into wailing.
I’m still not sure who I felt worse for.
I’ve been that mom. The one who wouldn’t accept any help. The one who suffered or caused her kid to suffer because of it.
Shoot, I still am that mom. I still have that pride. I’ve just learned to step back and accept a little help.
That’s just one more thing in a long list of things I wish I had understood a few years back.