6.15.2006

Thursday Thirteen #4



Thirteen Things
I'd Like To Tell The Woman I "Met" At The Post Office Yesterday

1. He’s three and a half. He’s recently potty trained and was trying not to wet his pants. (And yes, he did go before we left the house.)

2. In case you didn’t notice, my hands were full with a package to mail as well as his little brother, who is two – and who, I can tell you, was also running and whooping before I caught him and he started trying to crawl out of my arms by going over my head. And how old are you?

3. Also, they were behaving fine until a nicer fellow customer stopped to ask me if I was a resident of the city and if I wanted to know more about the young readers program. I’m not, so I didn’t, but by the time I could answer her politely, my boys had started the whoop jog around the room.

4. And I was mailing a package to their dad, who is overseas for the whole summer. He’s been gone for less than ten days so far, but you couldn’t even manage ten seconds of patience with my little ones, so I don’t really think you could do what I’m doing.

5. Do you know how much I literally sweat about taking the boys into a post office? It's one of my least favorite places because of the waiting in line (little boys don’t do that with any more grace than you do), and the feeling that everyone is looking at me and judging my parenting by whether or not my boys stand like robots beside me in line. Incidentally, mailing a package overseas required extra paperwork, so I had to wait in line twice.

6. In retrospect, I don’t believe I could have done anything different in the situation than I was doing, because I was doing the best I could. Can you say the same?

7. But since you acted like the post office was supposed to be as quiet and solemn as a library or a church, you should know that the Lord’s name is not an expletive, and it should not be used in that tone and that loudly, nor in the face of my three-year-old. That was more obnoxious than the sophomoric dirty look you threw my way after my boy crossed your path (without even touching you, I might add) in your hurry out the door.

8. Must have been nice for you to be able to act like that and then walk out the door without hearing a reply. I didn't make one - I never have one in situations like these, but you still missed a lot of the show…

9. The postal worker asked me if I only had two kids and when I nodded she said, “It’s enough, huh?” I was actually less insulted by her remark than I may have been normally because it at least approached empathy.

10. And my little boy forgot how bad he needed to go pee long enough to ask me with genuine concern - albeit loudly, for everyone else in the post office to hear - why I was crying and if I was OK. Looks like he’s further along on his way to getting over himself and caring about others than you are.

11. I am willing to give you the benefit of believing you were having a bad day, and it's quite possible that my children need their running and hollering curbed a little, but I'm glad they are at least learning that bad day or not - it's not OK to take it out on other people. And how old are you?

12. But hey, I haven’t cried really hot, embarrassed tears like that since the Payless Shoe Source Lady (who asked me not to "let" my infant spit up on "her" floor - while I was cleaning it up!) and the Man on the Airplane Three Rows Back (who made an unwarranted and snide comment about bringing a baby on board - before we even took off). To all three of you, and others like you, I say thanks for this experience. Because of you, I am reminded what I am about and what really matters.

13. You're not it. And from now on, I'm going to concentrate on doing what you should have done yesterday: Relax! Life is just too short, and my little boys will grow up quicker than I can get through the line at the post office.

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24 comments:

Carmen said...

Lesson from you today: It's hard to judge til you've walked in someone's shoes. Thanks for making me think about being more patient. :)

Tess said...

I am so sorry you had such a rough time there. I am not laughing, I am jaw-slacked mad! she had nerve

Jennifer said...

Oh, I am SO sorry about your tough day. I hate taking my 2 yo into the PO, too. It really is the worst. I almost always resort to the stroller, where he still screams and squirms, and which makes it hard for me to bring in the packages I'm supposed to be mailing. Yes, it's a no-win situation. In 12, you said that you were reminded about what you are, and from the little I've read from you since I started, you are a good mom, and a fun mom, and a fun and insightful read.

Keltybug said...

As moms we try hard to do what is right and teach our children the same. You taught your kids a good lesson of maturity. Boo to that woman. I have cried many hot stinging tears. It feels like a personal attack. Hope your dy is better and the kids give you some peace.

Wenchy said...

Sound like a horrible time was had at the post office.

Thoroughly Mormon Millie said...

Pain + Time = Humor

Way to deal with it creatively. It only benefits you.

We all know who THOSE PEOPLE are and they so won't be with us in the CK.

::hugs and smacks with pillows::

Wystful1 said...

Some people...very unkind, rude and non-thinking.

My Thurs 13 is posted

Katherine@Raising Five said...

Boy, have I been in your shoes. I hate going anywhere were there are lines with little ones. It's just plain hard.

But you're right, life is short, and you can't spend it trying to please strangers in the Post Office. Proud of you for such a great attitude. I STILL struggle when people are so unkind. You are ahead of the game to have such perspective.

PS-I have printed out shipping labels from home from the USPS website. An option for next time?

Your Husband (Traveling Edition) said...

It is good that I wasn't in your shoes yesterday. Otherwise Calvin may have learned some creative new vocabulary as I followed her out to the parking lot... You always act better than I do in situations like that, its one of the reasons I love you.

Peter said...

Sounds like a tough day. Try not to let it get you down. I feel sad for the soul of the person who doesn't understand taking two kids into public.
I am sure old nose in the air was just perfect when he/she was a child.

Colleen said...

I think this is why there has been a package in need of mailing in my car since monday.

Jen said...

There's something very wrong in our society. We've forgotten that children are the future of our human race and culture, and that they are blessings to us all.

I'm sorry that woman was so nasty to you. Usually when something like that is going on, there's at least one or two people who totally get where you're coming from and sympathize with you, it's just not as obvious.

Hugs.

My T13 is up!

PS-If you see her again, let me know. I'll kick her or something ;)

Kelly said...

OH.
I hate the post office.
Your experience sounds like a DOOZY though.
People are amazing.
They act like little kids should act like adults.
WHAT?
If they don't like kids then they shouldn't go out into public during "kid" hours.
Sorry about your experience.

My list is up!

Anele said...

Don't worry if people are judging you or not. You're doing what you think is right? Then it's right!
The ones who judge today will be judged tomorrow!
My TT is up too!
Hugs!!!

Morning Glory said...

About all I'm doing regarding blogs today is reading a few. I'm glad yours was one of them. You were magnificent and the comment from your husband is just priceless! Hang in there, friend.

No Cool Story said...

We really need to develop that Jimmy Neutron force field shield: sandboxes, bird-pooped cars, frail women w/church keys, protection from irate women at the PO.
Your husband’s comment is sweet, what a guy :)

Had she known you were "the" Code Yellow Mom and you have such powerful blogging friends, bet she wouldn't have mess with you, the Oh Henry and the Calvin boy.

MugwumpMom said...

So sorry you had that kind of a day. If only people would remember what Jesus and our grandmothers taught us...do for others what you wish others would do for you. If only she had of nicely asked "how can I help?" I'm sure you would have appreciated that, and God would hav smiled. As it is now, He's pleased with your response anyway, so wash "her" off.

Naomi said...

Wow...sounds like a horrible experience. Some people are just rude, and you should try not ot let it get to you.

Easier said then done, however. My sentiments.

Susan said...

You bring up an important point....we have to think about life in someone else's shoes before we judge. AND we have to realize that there is ALWAYS more to the story than what meets the eye....I am sorry that this happened to you and hope that you find support and peace during your dh's absence. I am a MOm of four boys and TOTALLY understand this scenerio. I have even cried red-hot tears over them and the public before. Hang in there.

My TT is up here.

PixiePincessMom said...

{{{hugs}}} I'm sorry you had such a yucky day. It's never ok to be rude & I wish everyone could treat others the way they'd like to be treated. Sadly, the world is a very selfish place. Kudos to you for not getting in their face & knocking them down a few pegs; I don't know if I could have kept my mouth shut.

Angela said...

I love your husband. What a sweet man. I felt sad for you, but his comment brought me to tears. I hate the post office too. It breeds idiots or something. I think you should hang out with me, I am quick with responses. But I almost always regret them later, so maybe not.
I'm glad you can look at it for what it is, and Relax! Good for you.
Teach Calvin a code word and then some insanely, inappropriate and rude thing to say when he hears it. Oh wait, maybe my temper and intolerance aren't what I should be sharing....

Stephanie said...

Good thing said lady at the Post Office was never a child, huh?

Seriously, what is her problem? Kids are kids and they are a handful no matter how they behave. It seems like before we are kids we know how to raise everyone elses, and maybe the same goes for once they leave home.

I am sorry you had such a crummy trip to the P.O.

Christine said...

Ih ave had similar experiences at the grocery store. What exactly am I supposed to do? Not buy food? Leave my kids in the car? People need to take a chill pill.

"Grandi" said...

Don't ya just wish you could actually say those things (kindly, with a serene smile of course!!HA!!) when the opportunity presents itself?! Hang in there mom - your list is a good reminder to some of us "empty-nesters" that our charges did the same things once upon a time!! Your husband(traveling edition)sounds like a jewel!