When Tragedy Happens

With the tragic death of a sweet baby in our small community, emotions are high.  I can relate to and understand reactions that are similar to mine.   My heart aches for a family, a mother, a father,  a sister, a grandmother, a church, a community.   I grieve the loss of a sweet soul to eternity.

What I am struggling with, are the other reactions, the negative and hurtful reactions.   I cannot believe the insensitivity and some of the horrible comments.  I have thought long and hard about why people would be so cruel.

When they say, “I don’t understand why the family is profiting on the death of this baby,” what they mean is, “I am greedy and envious that I cannot exploit some tragedy in my life for financial gain.”

When they say, “That grandmother is too young, and too pretty…. That grandfather has too many motorcycles and tattoos…. That father had a run in with the law in 1999,” what they mean is, “Don’t look too hard at my family.   I try really hard to present an ideal picture on Facebook.  I don’t want you looking too hard at the skeletons and imperfections in my own life.  I don’t want to talk about my cousin who went to jail and my dad who is an alcoholic.”

When they question the searchers and law enforcement, what they really mean is, “I feel like a guilty jerk that I didn’t do my part by getting off my lazy tail to help by searching or sending a casserole.  My criticism of those who participated makes me feel better about how worthless I have been in this endeavor.”

When they say, “I don’t understand how anyone could lose a two-year old,” what they mean is, “I absolutely understand how this happened, because it (has, could, did, is happening) to me right this moment.  (I lose my two year old in my own house at least once a day.)  This is their fear and them reassuring themselves that it couldn’t happen to them, knowing full well that it is luck that it has not happened to them”

When they petition the government for a deeper investigation, what they mean is, “My right to salacious details and gossip is more important than your pain and grief.”

I hope and pray that those with a negative attitude will consider the pain of their words before making further statements.  However involved you feel in this event, your pain is nothing compared to that of a grieving mother and father.  Please measure your words.

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear .Ephesians 4:29

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I Am Judging YOU Moms of Chick-fil-A

chick fil a

A blog has recently gone around Facebook about a mom saying she isn’t judging other mothers who are on their iPhone at the park and not taking care of their children. She says a lot of beautiful and flowery things about how she understands that those mothers are tired and this may be the only time of day that they have to themselves.

I get that, I do, but the time to be on your iPhone and have some privacy is in your own home with the bathroom door locked while you are pretending to poop like a normal person. So that lady on her blog may be nicer than me and she may not be judging you, but news flash, I AM judging you.

I had a couple of days off in the middle of the week the other day and decided to do something novel with my physician friend, Hipster Doctor and her baby girl Jabberwocky. My two girls and I joined HD and Jabberwocky for trolling Target followed by a play date lunch at Chick-fil-A.

Our local Chick-fil-A has an enclosed playground, and I must admit that they are fantastic at catering to the Ladies Who Lunch crowd. They took my order, and noticed my hands were full so they offered to bring my tray out to me while I got the girls settled in the playground area. What I didn’t realize is that the playground at Chick-fil-A is more like a Mixed Martial Arts Cage Match than a playground. It is a freaking free for all.

There was a veritable cavalcade of women who obviously do this daily either sitting isolated while playing on their iPhone, or with groups of friends happily gossiping, but they all had one universal thing in common. None of them seemed to give a crap what their precious angels were doing. I witnessed big kiddos shoving little kiddos to the ground without so much as a raised eyebrow. One portly little boy was going around spitting on the ground where the little kids were playing and I had to go talk to him myself about not spitting where other people have to play. He looked absolutely astounded and shocked that he had been corrected by an adult.

The good people of Chick-fil-A had graciously provided a dispenser of individually wrapped purel wipes to help sanitize the children after their play date in tuberculosis-laden sputumville. I witnessed two delightfully smocked children in expensive, lovely outfits repeatedly rip over half of these out of the dispenser and open them up to throw both the wrapper and the wipes on the floor. They finally stopped when I asked them to. I wish their mothers cared as much about the growth of their character as they do about how they look when they go out. My children left the house in Target hand-me-downs instead of fifty dollar boutique chic, however; if they behaved that way, it would be their A%$. When I pointed out what the girls were doing to their mothers, it was met with an overwhelming look of “whatever.”

I realize that being a mother is a hard job. I get that. I have the same job. My Pottery teacher has perhaps the sweetest, most polite three little girls I have ever known and in the words of The Hairy Potter and his wife, The Jillionaire, “Discipline has to be like gravity with kids. It is a force that is always on.”

I totally understand that you are trying to have a relaxing lunch with your friends…. Me too, and so is everyone else at Chick-fil-A midday with their little ones. In a few years when my daughters still listen to what I have to say and your little sociopath burns the house down you may wonder where you went wrong. (Okay, that last part may be a little extreme.) I allege that it went wrong with everyday opportunities like this when you failed to teach your children courtesy to the good folks of Chick-fil-A and to the other patrons. If you are unable to instill these values in your five year old, what is your sixteen year old going to look like? What kind of citizen are you rearing? So yes, I am judging you mothers of Chick-fil-A for all the good it will do in the face of your eye-rolling ambivalence.

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