Judged

Micah had an appointment at the ENT today. Again. I've vowed to be vigilant about his tubes this year because in the past he's gone for months with impaired hearing before we were able to get the tubes replaced. It took 5 years, but apparently we really can learn.

His tubes are good for now.

After the appointment I took the kids shopping for a while. We got a few odds and ends, played at the mall play center, and finished the day at a bookstore.

Book stores are very much like libraries in their lack of noise. I've never seen a sign reminding the customers to keep their voices low, but it's just an inherited trait that we all grew up with thanks to vigilant school librarians.

Micah broke the unwritten rule. He was on full volume today. Woody felt the need to yell at the top of his lungs while herding a group of stuffed giraffes through the kids section. Micah loudly pointed out every fun book that he saw, and exclaimed over every page. The noise could be heard all over the store. I know. The kids were watching Micah as I used the facilities. I could even hear him while locked in the restroom. He was that loud today.

I am very conscious of the noise that Micah makes, especially when it's at top level. I, of all people, know how incredibly loud and annoying it can be at times. But there is also nothing that I can do to quiet him. Shushing makes him angry and he'll stop with the yelling and start with the screaming. Nothing short of removing him from the store will make the store quiet again. I struggled with the whole mom-guilt thing, wondering what others were thinking and pleading silently for people to understand.

And then I reminded myself that I wasn't going to worry about what others thought of him. I'm doing my best to parent him. I ask him to shush, I remind him to play quietly, but sometimes that's all that I can do. He's not breaking any rules, so it really shouldn't be a big deal.

It was at this time that a young man walked by, waited until he was just behind me, and then felt the need to say, "maybe you should give him a microphone yet."

I wish that common courtesy allowed me to reply with, "bite me." As it was, I figured that I would ignore his rude remark. While it might sting on the inside, I wasn't going to allow him the satisfaction of knowing it.

Sometimes being a parent hurts in ways that you just didn't ever think about. The judgement of an innocent child is one that will always smart.

23 comments:

My name is Sarah said...

This is Joyce. I would have said, "Oh a microphone what a great idea!!!" Yuk, don't you just hate it when people are so rude. Actually Sarah used to have a microphone she used all the time that when she yelled into it the words would vibrate. I see them at the dollar store. Maybe Micah would like one too. I just love his face and smile.

Viv said...

Not to make light of the situation because believe you me, I do a lot of silent pleading with my eyes when H is in top form, but I'll judge Micah too...as being very darn cute. I love the picture, especially his smile and if I had been in that book store, I would have been the one silently thanking you with my eyes. All of us mommies have been there, and I sure do appreciate a mommy that keeps her composure, it reminds me to be a better mommy who can also handle moments like those with grace.

Fishsticks and Fireflies said...

You are the poster woman for self restraint, because I most certainly would have told him to bite me! I hate how judgemental people can be in one passing glance - looks are often deceiving! Being so tall and slender, Cooper used to draw a lot of those looks that read, "Why is your 5-year-old riding in a stroller/using a pacifier/wearing diapers?" All when he was just barely 3.

I'm with you - let him speak his mind at whatever volume he wants! And what is it with bookstores? I too always feel bad when the kids are carrying on at top volume.

Shellie said...

I'm so sorry, I have so been there and done that. It's easy to say let go, but it's harder to do. I decided to silently wave my magic wand in my brain and just as silently wish those rude commenters to become parents to quadruplets. Then I smile my sweet, somewhat evil smile at them, and walk away happy.

SunflowerMom said...

How infuriating! I like Joyce's reply, "hey! that'd make a great Christmas gift! Thanks!" LOL

I was nodding my head along regarding being able to hear me from a distance. Sean generally is a noise maker and it makes it fairly easy to find him when we are out. :P

I always watch other people's reaction to Sean in public, it is so interesting to see how others view him. After his appt today, we stopped at Braum's for cones and Sean chose a booth next to an older couple. He climbed up and stuck his head next to the gentleman's face and gave him a cheery "Hi!" The wife said, "You must recognize a grandpa when you see one!" :)

The world needs more of that.

BeautifulWreck said...

What an ass. You were a better person than me today. I would have been ugly to him. You did the right thing, next time tho, show up at the store with one of those hand held microphones that magnify everything. :)

Michelle said...

I think book stores SHOULD be about fun -- maybe kids would enjoy reading more if it weren't made into such an adult thing.

There are days that I remind myself that i'll never see these people again... and that helps *this* much.

You're a good mom. People are dumb.

Mommy to those Special Ks said...

I can't say I would have been quiet about it... I KNOW Frank wouldn't have... we probably would have been asked to leave that book store. LOL What a jerk. I think Joyce's reply is perfect! I'll have to remember that if we're ever in a similar situation!

the planet of janet said...

ah, you are more virtuous than i will ever be.

because i *totally* would have said "bite me" and then engaged the guy in a microphone-worthy shouting match.

*hangs head in shame*

Cecily R said...

Me? I would have clammed up, said nothing and cried all the way home. I'm a total wuss when it comes to that stuff. I'm sorry you had to deal with someone who decided to act far more immature than Micah was acting--no matter how loud he was.

If only we could all be so joyful over books and Woody. Seems to me the world would be a better place if we were.

Molly C said...

On behalf of young people, I'd be more than happy to tell that young man to bite me. or he could kiss another certain part of my anatomy.

Pssh, if I saw Micah being happy in the bookstore I'd be like "Hi, He's adorable and I wish all kids could be this happy to be in a bookstore"

and then I might accidentally knock the stupid young guy over the head with a rather large book. And then when he went "ow!" I'd say "Maybe we should get you a microphone"

Pam said...

Not that it will make you feel better, but I often feel this way with Riley. He is so unpredicatable and it is hard to tell which time telling him no will set off world war 3. So walk around holding my breath waiting for the explotion. Which is probably why I am exhausted all the time. I could learn a lot from you- mom guilt and I are like best friends. We are completely inseperable and have those little dangly best friend necklaces to prove it. I think it is time I let some of that go!

Anonymous said...

I lurk..ALOT..and I think your an awesome mom..me on the other hand would of been all...you got an extra considering you like to announce things people don't care about...or something just as mean.you are a way better person than me..he is toooo dang cute..if I was in the bookstore with you I would of asked for a hug...from both of you..

Trisha said...

It is always easy to judge others when you don't know what they are going through. I have to admit that yelling kiddos isn't too much fun to listen to but, I also know that most of the times, the parents wish they could quiet the kiddos down. I don't think anyone should embarras parents for things they have no control over!

JennyH said...

I don't even take all 4 to the library anymore. Max thinks it is a great place to run and hide. Then laughs -loudly- as I try to chase him down. The bookstores aren't much better. I say screw other people who don't like the loud Micah!

justmylife said...

I would have told him to BITE ME! I would have been louder than Micah. But that is just me, I am a bit of a smart a**. You handled it beautifully.

Burgh Baby said...

If I would have had a microphone, I know where I would have shoved it.

Karen said...

Anon - I love running into people like you in public. It's heartening to know that not everyone sits in judgement.

AKP said...

HISS BOOOOO at that insensitive guy. I think if someone is going to make such insensative/rude comments about a child they deserve a "mamma bear" resonse.. including making them feel this >> . <<< small for making such remarks about a child who has down syndrome. I'm sure "HIS" mother would be incredibly embarrassed by "HIS" inability to control "HIMSELF" GRRRRR he should be glad I wasn't there I would have tore him a new one had I overheard that.

I agree with the other commenters and think you should buy him one of those microphones. I bet he would have a lot of fun with one. If he likes it perhaps he could take it to school on the days he works with the speech pathologist, could be an interesting tool that may foster speech!?!

We all love Micah just the way he is!!

Debbie Yost said...

I don't know who's suggestion I like better; Joyce or Burgh Baby's. :)

Domestic Goddess (In Training) said...

What is with people these days? I would never say something like that to someone about their kid and I get that crap all the time. I was just somewhere and someone made a similarly nasty comment about my 3 year old and while I wanted to say "piss off," I just say there silently. I say from this point on, we let the judegmental crapheads have it! I will if you will!

Karen Deborah said...

I love Micah. How much you wanta bet that your rude commenter was a tolerant liberal?

Flea said...

You should probably start making insolent t-shirts for yourself. I don't know what they'd say, but something big and in your face for the times when you turn with a sweet response. Hmm. I'll have to think about this.