I didn’t think much about it until about halfway through the session. Then, I caught it. A look of disapproval and annoyance. I thought I was overreacting. Towards the end of class, you made a comment. You were talking to someone else about their child, but was staring right at me. You said something along the lines of, “Well, at least he isn’t screaming or crying…” At that time, my son was screaming. Loudly. He cried during the entire playgroup. It was his second time.
I saw you again today. My son was a different child than the first time you saw him. He laughed, played and tried all the obstacles. He ran and giggled through the activities. He had the time of his life. Yet, I saw the same look of annoyance again. As if he were a disruption.
Of course, it could be just me. It’s hard to believe that someone would be that involved with someone else’s child over their own. Maybe I’m overreacting. Maybe that “look” is just your permanent face. Hey, I relate. I suffer from RBF (Resting B*itch Face). Maybe, you and I are twins.
If this had happened a year ago, your actions would have deeply affected me. I would have been mortified. I would have hated myself. I would have doubted myself as parent. I wouldn’t be able to look you in the eye because the shame would have overtaken me. I would label myself an unworthy parent, and a failure. And it would all be because of that judgmental look.
Not today! I know who I am as a mother. I do my very best to care for my son. I love him in every way possible. I know that his actions are typical of a toddler his age. He screams. He runs. He plays. It’s a play gym.
I found that my ability that ignore this judgement meant something more. I no longer resent myself for how I raise my son. I don’t feel guilty for the choices I make. I don’t see my self as a bad or unfit mother. It took a while, but I’m good. It has made a huge difference in how I react to others and how I raise my son. I’m a better mother now. I don’t care if the typical actions of a toddler bother you.
So, judge if you will lady. Meanwhile, my son and I will be having the time of our lives.