Parenting 2.0

How to Speak Up?

Posted on: April 27, 2010

What I learned today:

1) Always keep extra wipes in the car, as you never know when you may want them.

2) And when I don’t have wipes? (Or even if I do…) Keep this mantra in mind: He’s building his immunities.

Sometimes I wonder why it’s so hard to say things to certain people. Here’s the situation…

Niko was in need of some new cloth diapers. There’s a shop in Ottawa that supplies them, so we made our way there this afternoon. I parked close to the shop and seeing as there are few steps upon entering, I left my stroller in the car and hauled my not so little babe in, in his car seat.

When we got into the store the clerk was on the phone, another customer had a bawling newborn and there were two toddlers roaming around barefoot. The clerk told me she would help me in a minute, but actually another clerk showed up instead. Niko was acting a little fussy, so I was asking questions about the diapers while rocking his car seat at my feet. At one point I stopped rocking it, got into a convo with the clerk and when I  looked down again Niko was being invaded by one curious little toddler (a girl of about three). She had crept up quietly and was intently looking at the little guy, crouched just a few inches from his face. I didn’t even know where she came from, but smiled and told her his name was Niko. Then her sister showed up, probably about two years old, and they were both gazing in at little Niko.

Meanwhile, the clerk continued to help me while the other one still gabbed on the phone, with a customer I think (hope). By this point I was only half listening as I also wanted to supervise what was going on underfoot. The little girls ended up touching his toys and holding his hands, to which I responded in the nicest voice I could muster, “Please don’t touch his hands, because he puts them in his mouth.” All I was really thinking was, “Who the heck is their mother and where is she?” The girls continued to fondle Niko and I continued to get internally annoyed while staying outwardly calm and trying to tell them nicely to back off. After about five min. their mom finally came over, she was the other clerk in the store, and she was still on the phone, but she grabbed the girls’ arms and pulled them away. However this did nothing to deter them from continually creeping up. I was getting increasingly annoyed, and the clerk that was helping me, well it was her first day, so she was just learning and really slow at the whole sales process!

By the time I left I was livid (maybe I was overreacting, but that’s just how I felt). Why were this woman’s kids touching my baby? (Well, because they were curious and it’s natural!) But more to the point, why was this woman at work with her kids and why wasn’t she getting them away from my baby?!

When I left the store I called Borys to vent my frustrations, and while he was a willing ear he also gently reminded me that we can’t shield him from everything. True, true. But I was still annoyed and wondering why I didn’t speak up, again? I mean babies can’t speak up for themselves, so the parents are left to do it. I just didn’t know what to say, or how to tell this lady to keep her kids off. I was just there trying to learn about cloth diapers (and trust me there’s A LOT to learn – a million options to be exact!), and while I was trying to learn I ended up being super distracted by these little urchins fondling my baby, not to mention leaning all over his car seat.

Am I overreacting? I know he needs to build his immunities, but I was there (with limited time) as a paying customer not for a play date!

Note: Today I left my condo, for the first time without a diaper bag. I pretty much know Niko’s routine now and I figured we were safe to leave the house without this cumbersome accessory. But you know what? I would have loved to have some wipes in my car post store visit. Seeing as I had no diaper bag, I had no wipes. On the way home I stopped at Shoppers and bought a supply for the car. They are now in my car awaiting any future hiccups, that will inevitably occur.

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3 Responses to "How to Speak Up?"

[…] better for the environment, overall ends up being less expensive, and my sister supplied us with most of the cloth diapers and wraps that she used. So it was both an eco-friendly and eco-nomical choice […]

[…] a small tractor, a shred of beloved fabric, a plastic doll. We lose muscle tone, sleep, reason, perspective. Our hearts begin to live outside our bodies. They breath, they eat, they crawl and – look! […]

I hate when people feel the need to touch my babies. I had a lady with dirty black hands (clearly doing either man work or gardening) hold hands with my baby and then tell my child not to try to put her hands (the old ladies hands) in her (my daughter’s) mouth. Ew! She knew her hands were dirty but she touched her anyways. Its annoying.

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