I'm sure you didn't mean to. I'm sure you weren't just another one of those people who love to start “Mommy War” battles. I'm sure you were just a person with an opinion.
See, at first, Woman at Target, when we bonded over the terrible baby tank tops, I thought I found another annoyed mom. Because, seriously, WTH with the tanks Carter's? Instead, you jealously asked, “Aren't you relieved you don't have to actually take care of your kids?”
When the look on my face changed from a frustrated smile over what I could possibly send my boys to school in for class picture day to “Are you kidding me?” You followed the unanswered question up with, “Well, I mean, since you send them to daycare.”
Still, nearly two days later, I'm speechless. You're right, I don't change my son's diaper at 10am on the average Tuesday. I'm not the one that gives him his baby puree at 3:30. But, I am the one that takes care of him.
I work so he can have clean diapers, and so we can pay it forward a little with Every Little Bottom. I might not have the afternoons alone with them to hang out and go for a walk when it's nice. Instead, I'm listening to my interview tapes, furiously transcribing: living out the dream I had before I became a mother, the dream I still have, the career I love.
See, what I didn't say when you asked me that question Woman at Target, when I elected to sputter about needing diapers and hurrying away, was that for all the pity you have for me, I have it for you too.
Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the women that stay at home, y'all push me to do Pinterest crafts and bake reguarly. Without you, I would probably re-watch every single episode of Grey's Anatomy. But you seemed so hell bent on making the distinction, that I don't take care of them. You must have such a closed off mind.
When you saw me I had my infants solo because my husband was off with my step-daughter. She's no Mia Hamm, but she's chosen soccer as her sport and we try to make sure he goes to nearly every game. Instead of dumping them at my in-law's for some free babysitting, I wanted to get them out, experiencing the world, showing them sights and sounds they wouldn't see from the comfort of our living room.
But I knew it would mean getting almost run over in the parking lot (twice this past weekend, but whose counting?) Watching people let the door slam in my face, or not give me room to push my double stroller. If I wasn't taking care of my kids we wouldn't have made it out of the parking lot, much less through the doors and to the back of the store, to the baby department.
You should know, Woman at Target, that when I did finally make it to my car after pushing my double stroller with diapers balanced precariously on the top, I cried. Because part of me wants to be the one to give my son his baby puree at 3:30 Wednesday afternoon. But a bigger part of me wants to be making plans to head to South Carolina in two weeks story gathering. Who are you to tell me which way is better?
I'm a great mom. I'm sure you are too. Isn't that enough?