On Monday I take River to the indoor playground in Watertown so he can get some wiggles out and I can escape the house for a while. Lila has a runny nose and cough, and being carried in the ergro keeps her upright and her nose cleared, so that's where she stays for most of the trip. When she wakes up a few hours in, I feed her and let her have a little playtime out of the carrier. We find this cute toy hanger-thingy (what the heck is that called?) and I set her down. She loves her playmat at home and this is no different.
After a minute a little girl (pictured) comes over to us carrying a bottle full of milk and, almost before I can stop her, shoves the bottle into Lila's face, saying, "Oh, that's a baby. She needs milk!" Horrified as I am to see some unknown bottle of formula? breastmilk? contaminated goat drippings? hurling toward my little girl's face, I feel very proud of myself for not physically tossing that little harbinger of germs away from my daughter. I explain, that, No, she doesn't need any milk. You should keep if for yourself, in a voice that sounds reasonable enough to me, but probably has more than a little bite to it.
The little girl tells me that the bottle isn't hers, and with a bit more prodding I discover she just found it somewhere and thought the best place for it was my daughter's mouth. My first thought is who is taking care of this child and why are they letting her pilfer some poor baby's bottle? My next thought is where the hell is this person and why are they letting her shove said bottle in my baby's face?! I look around but can't see anyone in the immediate vicinity who looks like they're with little miss milkmaid. I can't even see anyone glancing in her direction to keep an eye on her.
I ask the little girl who she's there with but she can't give a straight answer. She starts to bring toys over to Lila, which is a sweet gesture, but I'm so annoyed by the person not watching this girl I'm having a hard time mustering a smile. The last straw finally comes when a gigantic booger slips out of her nose and she wipes it with her hand then reaches down for another toy to hand Lila. And that's it for me. I can't pretend to be nice to her anymore, I can't take on the duties of nanny when I've got two of my own already (did I mention River is taking this opportunity of mommy's distraction to drop the hanging toys onto Lila's face?). I gently suggest she go find a tissue while my brain is screaming something with a few more four letter words in it.
And off she runs, as sweet as can be, to the woman 30 feet away who has been on her cell phone looking in the other direction the entire time.Cell Phone Lady doesn't smile at the girl, or help her with her nose. She just shoos the girl away to play in another room and goes back to her call.
I'm disgusted with myself for not being nicer when that girl is obviously just looking for someone to play with. But don't get me wrong: I'm infinitely more disgusted with the woman (mommy or sitter) who isn't taking care of that little girl. It's something I see often, but it doesn't get any easier. It still makes me want to punch that neglectful asshole in the face.
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The Wyrd Sisters chronicles my life, kids, and random thoughts. LittleSage is my design blog. Hope you'll check them both out.