Monday, January 25, 2010
Like I said, we carried this pint sized child around until he was 5 or 6 years, maybe even older. When Peter eventually learned to walked, he seemed not to just walk, but he learned to just run, rather quickly. And because he was so tiny, he could get into the smallest places, and between the most narrowest walls that I could not possibly squeeze past, so he would be gone before you knew it. These facts will play into later stories about the neighborhood, but right now I want to tell you about the embarrassment one suffers when others deem she is not handling her child appropriately.
Peter not only ran, he squirmed and squirmed until he was free. If that did not meet his needs, loud wailing in his tiny little voice ensued. So taking him, let's say, to the grocery store was always an major undertaking. Even those cuties little tie things which by now have probably been banned, worked to no avail. Those stressful grocery store visits almost always elicited supposedly well meaning advice from a fellow shopper or cold calculating stares that brought tears to my ears. I learned early on never, ever to be judgmental about those two year olds having a coronary that they could not have a candy bar, because, I knew the parent is preferring that child was also not having that coronary, and would really like to not be standing in the grocery line.
After years of those ungracious stares , what could be pages of free advice, and many trips leaving a store with tears running down my cheeks, thinking if only they knew...maybe if I put a sign on Peter they would understand, I finally "got over it" It was a defining, cathartic moment in my life which I, Sara and Mike will never forget. They also suffered from these moments, and hopefully, through them have learned.
One day Sara really needed to go to the library. Yes, I did not take my children to the library, felt the guilt because every good mother takes her kids to the library, but now with the addition of Peter, library trips would be considered catastrophic. However, Sara had an assignment due, and the library was the only solution to meeting that assignment. So off we went, all three kids in tow, to the library.
Once we arrived, Peter squirmed and tried to get down throughout the entire experience, and I was doing well with Houdini until Sara desperately needed my help at the card catalog.....remember those now archaic mechanisms used to find books? With doubt in my mind, I put Peter down and thought I had him pinned between my legs and the table. I do not know how long it takes for an individual to leave the card catalog table and run to the doors that say DO NOT OPEN, EMERGENCY EXIT, but I think it was seconds~ Do you know how loud a fire siren is in the library....LOUD! And yes, eventually everyone knew who was the culprit and worse yet, the culprit's mother, but something new had taken over my body....I did not care that everyone was staring at me, I laughed, the horrified look on Sara and Mike's face left, and they laughed. Why it was just Peter, being Peter, and you know how he loves doors...and I was doing the best I could under the circumstance. So I laughed, Sara and Mike laughed, the library lady laughed and all was good. Of course we apologized and explained, but this time the tears were those happy tears that come from laughing so hard.
And so, from that day on, the tears were less and the laughter more. Luckily, because that was only the tip of the iceberg in regards to "Peter Events" and teary eyes from laughter was the best answer.