You know the mom I'm talking about. The one with the kids misbehaving, as she pleads with them to come and stand still. The one that has the kids that makes other people NOT want kids. THAT Mom that the rest of us Moms (that have control of our kids) shake our heads at?
Yea, on Friday, that Mom was ME.
We went to the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo. It was super fun, and great, most of the day. We played with baby kangaroos, we held Lemurs from Madagascar. We saw 5 week old Bengal tigers. And there were very few people there. My friend, Nanaette and her two wonderful children came with us, and it was great.
Until the afternoon heat hit. Then Little Dude was done. Or hyped up on energy from his peanut butter sandwich at lunch. Somehow he converted it all to sugar and reved his engine up 100%. Maybe 200%.
He ran in circles around me. He ran ahead on the trail. He took his shirt off and refused to put it back on. He jumped and screamed and wouldn't stay in the bird area while we were there; instead he ran circles around the small bird building. (It was a totally caged aviary, so I could see him running around the building the whole time-he was never out of my sight). But I have to admit I didn't want to go after him and expose myself as the Mom of the crazy, screaming, dirt-covered-shirtless toddler pretending to be an airplane. Eventually I had to, since we were moving on to the deer area.
He was sweet and shared some of a blue slushy with his brother, for a few seconds. Then Little Dude poured it on JR. As Nanette and I tried to wash JR off so he wasn't sticky, we realized that whatever dye was in the slushy drink WAS NOT COMING OFF JR'S SKIN.
So I had a blue baby wobbling around and a crazy laughing toddler sprinting circles through the zoo and ignoring my pleads/yells to COME HERE NOW.
I noticed one young couple watching me, and it hit me.
I was THAT Mom. I had just ensured they would not be having kids for a few more years. Their faces said it all; they were rather horrified.
And in that moment, though I was embarrassed and at a loss at how to get control back from my toddlers, I realized something important.
Sometimes, THAT Mom, is just simply having a tough few minutes, or in my case, a bad hour in the hot hot sun. And though it LOOKS like she is a completely irresponsible, not-on-top-of-parenting parent, just keep watching. Eventually the toddler will come over and say he is sorry, and the baby will start rubbing sand on himself, making the blue skin not as noticeable (or sticky) and he will slow down from exhaustion so he can be captured and placed back in the carrier.
And all will be right with the world. At least until tomorrow.