Judgment and Crazy Hair

Annabel is not always a huge fan of sitting in shopping carts. At least not for long stretches. She’ll be okay for a little bit, but once she’s done, she’s DONE! Once she reaches that point, she wants out of there like ten seconds ago! Come to think of it, this is true for any constraining device: car seat, highchair, stroller, shopping cart.

Sometimes she lets me put her in said device and is fine for a little bit and then freaks out, but then other times, she doesn’t want in there from the get-go. Last week we had to run up to Target and I braced myself for a miniature tantrum upon placing her in the cart. But she didn’t react at all and let me easily slide her legs through the openings. I told her what a good girl she was as I began to fasten the buckle. Immediately after clicking it, I knew what I had done. I had pinched a tiny piece of the skin under her arm in the buckle. I know how bad that hurts, and so I waited for the inevitable scream. You know the kind. The kind that takes a full 3o seconds to be heard because it’s building up. Eventually that scream came and I felt so terrible!

I didn’t pick her back up, hoping that it would just be a short cry and we could be on our way (and it was). But during those literally 15 seconds of her screaming out, I could feel the stares boring into me. The harsh looks of judgment.

And it sucked. I was already feeling so bad about having unintentionally hurt my daughter and then a woman walked past me and wouldn’t stop staring. I didn’t make eye contact with her, so I don’t know if her stare was that of empathy or judgment about what a brat my daughter must be to be screaming in the cart. I’d like to say that I don’t care what she thought (and really I don’t care about her specifically), but I hate the thought of other people being annoyed by my kid. I hate the thought of people looking at her crying in the cart and passing judgment on what kind of mom I must be. I hate all of it and I know this is just the beginning. Lots of people hate kids, it’s just that simple. And when you only catch a 15 second glimpse of what appears to be a brat throwing a tantrum, I can see how that doesn’t help the perception. But it still sucks and I don’t look forward to all of the nasty stares and comments that are certain to come my way as I navigate what is often a kid un-friendly society.

So that’s my pity party. Rant over.

And now on to some hilarious pictures of what Annabel’s hair looked like the other day when I took the ponytail out of her hair that the daycare ladies had put in:

Amazing or what?!