I feel like as Moms we are constantly apologizing or filled with guilt. Guilt that our houses aren’t cleaner, that our kids aren’t in enough activities or are in too many activities, that we can’t manage everything at the same time. We are constantly juggling our children’s emotional needs, marriages, businesses, and our sanity and our lives are usually at least a little off balance. These are areas that I struggle with but this is not what I am talking about today. I am talking about going anywhere with a child between 2-4 years old. You know what I’m talking about! Even when the child is acting good they are still loud, squirmy and somehow sticky or messy. Then there are the all too common teaching moments that happen at this age where they are testing their (and our) limits.
In the past, when I had my first and second child, I would end up at home or on play dates and skip the store, dinner out or whatever the event was at the time. Now that my third child is at this lovely stage it is not possible to stay home. The older ones have events to go to. My husband and I are both on the go. Life has to continue on and that means we have to take our toddler along. *Gasp*
I have found myself on multiple occasions feeling bad for merely going to a coffee shop or store, because my toddler is acting his age. Even if he is behaving well for his age, just talkative, curious, friendly even, there are times when people look at me or him. They give the thin lipped smile that doesn’t reach their eyes. I know these people either don’t have kids or aren’t happy for their own reasons. But I know they are judging me and my son. Enough. Enough judgement of toddlers. They are learning, curious and soft hearted toddlers. They should be looked on with kindness and not judged for needing to learn social graces. Give them time and stop apologizing.
It is time for us to stop apologizing for our toddlers’ mere existence! I will no longer apologize for my toddlers behavior when out and about. I will not feel guilty for my toddler’s curiosity, or friendliness. If he needs to learn a boundary when out, I won’t apologize for that either. This is a part of life for all of us at one point. Every human being has been through this stage and we all need to understand and support the moms of these little humans!
I have enough going on without feeling guilty for bringing my toddler along with me while running errands. I need that coffee, I need to get the grocery or store shopping done. The to-do list needs to be checked off whether people or my toddler is on board for it! It’s just a part of life. No need for apologies or guilt.