"but next time, mind your own business - there's a mom at work here!"
So Sara and I have two beautiful sons. One of them is 4 and the other 11 weeks (roughly 2 months and some change). Liam can be impulsive about his temper - sometimes [like today] if the popper on the Trouble travel game doesn't obey - he will flip his s*** and throw it on the floor of the Sorento. 'Nuf said.
The two-month old on the other hand, knows one speed, 11. When I ask him why he doesn't just make 10 louder, he says, "Because I go to 11." Again, 'Nuf said.
Liam has levels - some things are easy come , easy go; while others are the end of the world as we know it. Oliver on the other hand goes to 11 if he wakes up and a breast or bottle aren't waiting on the end table for him like cash for some gigolo from the 1970s.
To set the scene, we stop to pick up a few groceries on the way home. Liam is kind of grumpy but he can make it for several minutes before his interstellar-pitched whine kicks in - Oliver however, decides that, in the middle of the store about halfway through shopping is the perfect time to kick it up a notch and he begins to scry. What is scry you might ask? Scry is the distinctive sound made by my infant son that is a combination of screaming and crying. For the math whizzes out there: Screaming + Crying = Scrying. Its loud, piercing and, if we were Neanderthals on the savannah, would alert the saber toothed tigers to our location and we'd be eaten in a second. Fortunately it is not the savannah in the Paleolithic era and tigers wont eat us.
As we stop to look at the variety of spaghetti sauces and try to identify which we have tried and which we haven't while being serenaded by Oliver, a woman with children of her own approaches and apparently wants to be friends for life: "Oh my gosh, he is so cute" [and then the third degree begins].
How old is he?
Is he your first?
What's his name?
Does he have red hair?
What beautiful cheeks, I bet he eats a lot"
blahblahblah....listen ma'am...he is wailing away and I do not have the ability to cognizantly respond to your inquiries - please refer to my public relations staff by calling 555-123-GOAWAY!. Unfortunately, this Cro-Magnon of the order "Inappropriate Questioner [sapien]" isn't the worst of the species. It attracts far worse.
What it does attract is the most irritating of human species, the Butt-Inskius Know-Better Advice giver [Sapien, had to throw that in so it sounds legit]. You can recognize Buttinskis by their furrowed brow, curled and judgmental upper lip and incessant and unending litany of suggestions for how to get our infant son to stop crying.
Maybe he's hungry.
Maybe you should feed him.
Maybe he's poopy, you should change him
Maybe he is tired.
Oh my goodness it sounds like someone should go home and go to bed.
All of these are done while conspicuously looking down the bridge of their nose while adjusting their spectacles or presenting smiles with obvious criticism for the way we are responding to the cries of our baby.
My beautiful wife, so patient, kind and understanding, smiles and nods or gives an "uh-huh" as acknowledgement that she heard the wonderfully insightful and informative suggestions offered by the child development specialist in our midst.
So, some advice for the blue hairs who have begun withering but want to offer their wisdom since they obviously raised perfect children who have already gone on to proliferate their godlike seed into broader society to show the unclean masses how to raise their children: Bug off!
When I have a 4 year old wanting me to buy the box of Sugar-Os that I have told him no to six times already and my 2 month old is pitching a fit either in my front pack or in the stroller and I am trying to wrangle them both, get my task done and keep my sanity - the last thing I want to hear is your input since I am already self conscious enough due to the energy, passion and volume with which my infant son is expressing his need for satisfaction. Hey! he may be hungry, he may be tired, he may be sick, he may be bored and he may just want some attention but you offering your condescension and judgment won't help any of those needs get met in the middle of Winco on a Wednesday evening.
I haven't heard the comments but I can tell you that I have seen the looks and have responded by staring right back at them with the protective gorilla expression on my face daring some, know-it-all, Subaru driving, breastfeeding until he is 60 months old, extended family sleeping in the same bed, Alberta street living, granola eating hippy who watched the child rearing episode of Bethanny and knows what my child needs woman, to make a suggestion about how to get my son to stop scrying in the store.
He is upset, he is loud and he is the most important thing in the world to me - I know his facial expressions. I know his body language. I know his cries [and scries]. But most importantly, I like to think HE knows I know and will get him what he needs just as soon as I can make that happen - but unless you're going to do the rest of my shopping - continue doing yours and let me finish mine to the energetic sounds of my son wailing. By the way, your need for a serene shopping experience at Winco isn't even on my last of a million things to worry about.