I noticed today that I sometimes judge parents when they’re out and about with their kids.
I’m not talking about the parents who are keeping tabs on their children and seem genuinely happy to be spending the day with their kids. I’m talking about the parents who are more interested in what is on their phone than the picture their 5-year-old drew for them while out for breakfast. Or the parent who decided that the 25-degree weather we had today in Fargo/Moorhead wasn’t the right time to put a coat on any of their children but made sure to put one on their own body before leaving the house this morning.
To be clear, this isn’t me saying that I know what it’s like to be a parent. I don’t.The closest I came to that was being a Resident Assisant, and even then, I started each year with “I’m not your mum.” And to be honest, I don’t know that I ever will know what it’s like to be a parent because I’m not too keen on the idea of having offspring of my own for the time being. I just feel like sometimes parents aren’t as aware of how they’re presenting themselves to the rest of the world.
I know, I know. People shouldn’t care what others think of them. But sometimes I get really frustrated when I see a child desperately trying to get their mum or dad’s attention only to be shushed or told off for acting out when they’re being denied something that they obviously need in that moment. I find myself just wanting to have a conversation with that kid to find out what they were so excited about.
And that’s saying something when the people who know me the best know that I don’t care much for the children of people I don’t know.
Perhaps if I ever do procreate, I’ll be the same as the parents who frustrate me so much. But if that happens, this is me giving my readers full permission to hit me upside the head to try and knock some sense into me. Because if there is one thing that I’m so thankful for, it’s that my parents took the time to find out who I am and were in the “here and now” with me a lot as a child. They made sure that I put a coat on before I realized why I needed one. They drew pictures with me in restaurants. And they only shushed me when I was too obnoxious for our setting. They let me be a kid.
So dear Mum and Dad: I love you. Thank you for not being crap parents. You’re my heroes. 🙂