Oh, So Nosey!


This past weekend was quite trying for my ego.  Friday, as I was picking up the kids from daycare, one of the little girls asked, “What’s wrong with your nose?”  Until that point, I didn’t really think anything was wrong with my nose.  Yeah, it’s pretty crooked at the end, but it’s a nose, noses do that. I asked my husband and sister their thoughts and neither said that there is anything terribly wrong with it. In fact, my sister responded (in her text lingo), “Honestly, I never noticed ur nose b4,”  Gee, thanks??  I am assuming she has looked at me before, but maybe not. 

Thanks to that 4-year-old, I now have a nose complex. 

And then Saturday….oh Saturday…  I bravely decided to enter the Panera that my husband manages (and was working at that day) with my 8-month-old and 3 1/2 year-old and attempt to eat lunch.  Until that point, I was kind of having an “I am a rock star” mom kind of morning.  My baby napped well, we went to the toy store together and survived, and had great plans to hit the nature center after lunch.  Go me, right?

So, lunch is what I would expect it to be with one parent, a baby, and my feisty preschooler.  The baby was pretty good although a little restless.  My 3-year-old was hyper from the attention from daddy’s coworkers and was hopping seat to seat and not eating much despite my efforts.  This is nothing unexpected because 3-year-olds aren’t always great eaters, and my daughter has a disease that makes it painful for her to eat (Eosinophilic Esophogitis) so mealtime is generally trying.  I am sure I will blog more about her condition at some point, but not necessary for this story.

So, as we are winding up lunch — after I had gotten some food in her and made one difficult trip with them both to the bathroom– a “kind” woman approached me. The conversation went like this:

Woman: Hi, are you ok?

Me: Yes, I am fine.

Woman: Well, my friend and I were watching you and were a little concerned. I am a kindergarten teacher and also teach mommy & me classes — don’t know if you have ever done anything like that? Anyway, we were concerned and just wanted to make sure you were okay. I would be happy to watch your baby so you can (kind of gestures towards my daughter).

Me: No, we are just leaving. I am fine thanks (all said with my winning smile and crooked nose).

And that was the end of it — well, not really, because I was almost in tears and I am still thinking about it three days later.  I was so upset that what she saw was a mother that needed help with her children when, although I wasn’t smiling and probably was a bit frazzled, I thought I had things under control. 

Was she seeing something I don’t – is my daughter really running all over me?  Perhaps she hit a nerve because I do worry my daughter doesn’t listen, but I also know she is three years old — and mealtimes are tough for her and for us.  My brain started wondering if maybe I did need help! My husband and other moms have reassured me that she was out of line, my kids and experience is normal, and that one woman’s comments shouldn’t make me question my own confidence as a mom.  But most mom’s I know do second guess themselves constantly — and then to have something “kindly” pointed out! Ouch.

She didn’t know me, my daughter, her health issues, or our situation, but she thought she had the right to offer me help – I felt judged and embarrassed.  I own that those are my feelings and it was not her intent to make me feel that way, of course. But I think and talk a lot about parenting in both my personal life and with my career – I could probably teach a Mommy & Me class which made it that much more offensive to me. 

And I know she was trying to be kind, but I think she was out of line.  If my child is bloody and screaming on the floor, then ask me if I need help and if I am okay.  I wholeheartedly believe that it takes a village, but I prefer to know the villager and that the villager know me.

I try my best to be a good mom. It is a hard job that us moms are judged on all too often.  Please be careful how you view a mom with “out of control” kids.  Put things into context, ie I was by myself with two small children in an “uncontrolled” environment and neither was crying or being neglected.  Your offer of kindness is based on a judgement that may or may not be accurate.  And, seriously, did she really think I was going to hand over my baby to her?  Is that what they teach in Mommy & Me classes?

So, needless to say, it was a tough weekend.  My nose is wrong and the nosey lady was wrong.  Both had me examining myself much more closely – I hope I am safe to say that my nose isn’t so bad and neither is my parenting.

Oh, and we had fun at the nature center (yep, got to get the cute kid pic in the hollowed out canoe in somehow!). Take that nosey lady.





9 thoughts on “Oh, So Nosey!

  1. First of all, you are gorgeous and your nose is perfect.
    Secondly, I agree, it does seem as though she were out of line. But perhaps she misread fatigue on your face as something else? I sometimes wonder what I look like to other people, especially when I am dealing with multiple small children – do I look as tired as I feel? And then sometimes someone will comment that I look tired when I don’t necessarily feel any more tired than usual, which of course makes me wonder what the heck I must look like when I am really tired!
    Glad you didn’t hand Harrison over – it all may have been a ruse to nab the sweetest baby in the world!

  2. Well, my nose is crooked. I will point it out next time I see you, but thanks :). Yeah, I really wonder what she saw – I will never know, of course. I will just go with that she was trying to kidnap Harrison.

  3. Thank you so much for the follow….although I know your days are much busier than mine and sitting down to [even] read are, most likely few and far between. Can you tell I’m impressed that you “found” me…and have decided to read me? I am impressed!! Your words are delightful and remind me of years….past…so past!! Keep smiling…

  4. You are lovely. And there’s nothing wrong with your nose!!! In fact, you and Kristen look so much like Alice, who I have always regarded as simply beautiful. It doesn’t get much better than that! BTW, have you ever noticed MY nose? It came (lovingly) from my father, whose was prominent. I have lived with it for almost 55 years now. Of course, as a child, our noses are not what they are in our adult lives. Daddy has been gone for 43 years now. So, to think I inherited his nose is a sweet legacy I am happy to live with! Don’t let the crazy nosey lady get to you. She really overstepped!!! How rude!!!! xo

    • I am not sure whose nose I have – I would be happy to have my dads – glad I have his eyes (though my mom’s hazel ones are pretty cool too). My nose has definitely changed over the years — I actually think pregnancy did something to it. Either way, I can handle it. Thanks for reading it Sylvia!

  5. It sounds as though she was doing a little self-promotion for her class. I’m sure you’ve thought of a hundred things you wish you’d said to her, but it’s almost impossible to anticipate and be ready when someone is that inappropriate. Also, as you said, “most moms I know do second guess themselves constantly.” The good parents do, anyway. I’m pretty sure that woman’s classes are filled with good parents — the ones who never think they’re doing enough. I wish she could read this post.

    • I wish she could too, though I am the kind of person who wouldn’t want her to feel bad. I know she meant well, but it would be good for her to figure out how to “sell herself” in a nicer way. And, yes, I would like to think I am one of those good parents who second-guess themselves.

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