To the mom at the commissary with fussy kids on the giant blue cart that the kids screamed and begged for at the entrance. As I squeezed by while you are wrangling your kids, we made that brief eye contact.
I identify with you. I have been in your shoes where one kid is screaming to go up and down the cart. I wanted to tell you that you are doing amazing, I tried to smile and look as nonjudgmental as possible. I felt like shouting “YOU ARE AN AWESOME MOM” but that may alarm the kids even more. So I pass by and whispered “You got this!!”, what I didn’t expect was your toddler giving me a thumbs up, I hope he didn’t think my encouraging words was for him.
I have been fortunate enough to have husband on shore duty when the kids were so much little. I still remember my first few grocery run with two kids, sweating and holding it together because the baby just want to nurse and toddler just want to go up and down the cart. I have felt my face turn red and hot as my toddler scream at the top of his lungs that he wants to go home and the baby just fusses. I felt so alone and life was spinning out of control.
I tried pretending to be calm and cool but i know deep inside is a battle. I was too embarrassed to leave my cart and just head out because I was feeling emotionally naked in front of a lot of spectators. My imagination runs wild as I picture people waiting on me to take my kids out to the car.
We crossed path again at the checkout lane, it gave me the opportunity to say hi and ask if you need help moving your groceries from the cart to the check out conveyor. I don’t know what you are feeling, but I hope you feel supported.
I really don't know how to end this, except to tell you that I have been there. I want you to know that I am with you, doing this beautiful yet messy work called motherhood.
I want you to know that we see you, no judgement, just respect because we identify with you and I do hope you know you are not alone in this journey. It may feel like it at times but you can be rest assured that we are not the first moms nor the last that have these "moments".