I had two interesting encounters this past week. Both with the same man and and both interactions made what was feeling like an overwhelming bad week just a little bit better.
Bayleigh started pre-team gymnastics a few weeks ago which basically turned our world upside down. We have, in the past, stuck close to home in the evenings. Only venturing out after 4 pm for the occasional family dinner when we’re visiting family. I was that crazy mom who stuck to her evening routine like glue! The boys never did well after 4 pm…basically ever, so when they told me what Bayleigh’s new schedule would be, I about passed out from shock! It would be M, W, and F from 4:15-6:30. I was like, are you joking??? What am I going to do with the boys for 3.5 hours (including travel time) 3 days a week??? You mean we have to leave our protective little bubble…at night?? Luckily, we hadn’t really become set into our new school routine yet so the boys weren’t adjusted yet anyways so we dove right in. September 4, a monday, we started. It was hard and I showed up to that first practice looking like the crazy bag lady. I had a cooler of food and snacks, a diaper bag with every toy imaginable, my purse which was filled with snacks and a drink for mom, and a bag for Bayleigh’s gym stuff. We showed up, parked our butts at a table and I spend the next 2.5 hours entertaining, playing with, feeding, and trying to make sure the boys didn’t lose their minds. It’s been 3 weeks now and we’re surviving. Some days I SERIOUSLY don’t want to put on my A game and deal with it but you do what you have to do. It feels like the boys drive everyone in the unusually quiet waiting room crazy. I try my best with toys, games, snacks, screen time, etc but at the end of the night, they just want to be 2 year old boys and run around. They usually make it until about 6 pm before they start losing their minds. I’m very very VERY proud of how well they are doing in this situation. It can’t be fun to watch sissy in a dark, quiet waiting room 3 days a week. Right now though, it just isn’t in the budget to pay for a babysitter 3 days a week….that would be nice though, wouldn’t it??
Ok, I seem to have gone off track!! Haha…Moving on. There is this older man that we see 2-3 times a week. He’s there by himself, watching his older daughter or grand daughter, I’m not sure. I always felt like we were bothering him. Then, on Wednesday this week, he was walking by our table on his way out the door and he told me “You are such a great mom”. I could have cried right then and there but I still had about 15 min of mom duty left at the gym, a 35 min car ride, dinner, and bedtime to get through. No time to lose it yet. I told my husband about what the man had said and how much it had meant to me for a complete stranger to build me up like that. I assumed that was the end of that and in passing I would just smile at him in gratitude.
On Friday night, the gym is less crowded and much quieter which is easier on me. Less people to make mad! Anyways…. He came up to me and told me again how great of a mom he thought I was. He asked if I was a kindergarten teacher, to which i replied…no way! He explained that he thought I was doing such a great job to raise them and showing so much patience with them. He was impressed that I came so prepared. I totally lost it! I gave him a hug and told him how much those words meant to me. I told him that most days I feel like I’m screwing this Mom thing up and to hear someone say that meant the world to me! I’m not sure this stranger actually knows how much those words meant to me at that time. It really gave me the strength to go on!
Imagine if us moms treated each other that way. If we built each other up and gave another mom that confidence boost. Everyone would benefit, especially the kids! We’re all just doing the best we can and hoping that we’re getting it right. I’m going to try to build up at least one of the many moms I come in contact with every single day. I see so many moms doing so many amazing things for their kids and their families….It won’t change the world but maybe it’ll make their day a little bit better.