I’ve been going through old journals and stacks of papers I’ve haphazardly stuffed into the many brightly colored shoe boxes stashed all around my home. I’m finding so many little slices of my life tucked away between scribbled to do lists and old mail. So many memories I may have forgotten had I not taken the time to preserve them in ink. This afternoons treasure hunt turned up this silly, and thankfully kept memory . . .
I had the greatest, most annoying and simply funny conversation with another mother at the grocery store this afternoon. I was scanning the shelves looking for something cheap, easy to prepare and nutritious to feed my growing children for dinner.
Actually, in all honesty, I could have cared less about nutrition, I just wanted an easy fix for the nights meal. I was with my youngest, so I turned to him for his expert opinion.
“How about corn dogs?” he says. I make a face and tell him corn dogs stink too much.
He says, “How about some popcorn?” I think not.
“Can we make lasagna?” The kid doesn’t even like lasagna, he says, “Oh yeah.” when I remind him.
Besides, lasagna would take effort on my part, the very thing I was trying to avoid. He makes a few more suggestions, all of which I reject for one reason or another, it was sort of becoming a game. We where laughing and having fun when I hear a voice behind me say, “He is just adorable, I remember when my son was that age, don’t worry sweetie, it gets easier.”
I didn’t think we sounded like we where having any difficulty, I smiled, despite the fact this girl had called me sweetie and we moved on. My little man brought up Spam, we both made a face and he acted like he was gagging. I told him to go bother his real mother.
“Little ones can be such a handful can’t they?” comes the voice again. I nodded in agreement and put a can of Spam in the cart just for the shock value of it. “My son was such a picky eater when he was young.” says the voice. I looked up to see a woman with a little boy not much older than the one I was dragging along with me. She asked what grade my son was in.
“Fourth.” I am not great with real life social interaction, I think I was supposed to ask her what grade her son was in. I didn’t, so after looking at me with great expectancy for what seemed like forever, she told me her son was in the sixth grade. I smiled and nodded. I think I was supposed to say something again.
I grabbed another can of Spam. My son told me to go and bother my real child. I don’t know where he gets that kind of sarcasm from. I tried to move on but Chatty Cathy began to tell me all about when her little Sam Man was that age. Hello strange lady in the canned goods aisle, it was only TWO years ago. She told me I should cherish every second because, well, just look at how fast they grow.
I nodded in agreement, again, pretty sure I was supposed to say something. I grabbed yet another can of Spam. My little Mikey Wikey started laughing so hard I thought he would wet himself. I was hoping she would move on, at this point I was praying she would move on. No. Such. Luck.
She ruffled Sam Man’s hair, looked me straight in the eye and said, “Just wait until he gets older, you’ll look at people with younger kids and it will bring back so many memories.” Then she sighs – she actually sighs a nostalgic little sigh while looking into the air as if she was watching a silent movie based upon the many years of parenting she’d already put behind her.
I guess the show was over because she floated back down to earth and asked me if I was planning on having any more children. I couldn’t help but laugh, I shook my head to indicate the negative. I didn’t think I could take anymore, this girl was making me nuts. Seriously nutso. I had three cans of Spam in my cart for goodness sake!
I smiled and told her I really needed to get going so I could get home in time to feed the kids. Oops. I said too much. “Oh, you have another little one? Is it a boy or a girl?” OMIGOSH I AM GOING TO GO INSANE!
I said both actually, I have two more boys and a girl. She looked down at my son and asked him how he liked being a big brother. My wonderfully witty little troll looked up at her and said “Me is da baby brudder.” Now I felt like I was going to pee my pants just a little.
The look on her face was priceless, “Oh, how old are they?” I swear she was looking at me like I was getting ready to tell her some colossal lie.
“Seventeen, fifteen and fourteen . . . that would be in years, not months.” That was rude wasn’t it? Oh well, no matter, like I said, conversational etiquette is not one of my strengths. I thought that would be the end of it. It wasn’t.
“I didn’t realize you where that old!” She put a little too much emphasis on the word that for my liking. I’m not that old . . . I guess I should take it as a compliment right? Truth is, I thought she looked older than me. She began to walk away and I swear to you, her Sam Man asked for Spam! Yet another priceless look spread itself across her face and I said, “Don’t worry sweetie, it gets easier.”
Ahhhhh . . . Back to dinner. Anyone know any good recipes for Spamburgers?