Monday, July 26, 2010
Those In Glass Houses.
So, we all know that I think we should support each other. We should be compassionate towards each other when we see a bad parenting moment in public - because we all have them and it doesn't mean we're bad parents all the time.
We should not judge because it's unhelpful, unsupportive and obnoxious.
Yesterday we went out to the beach. We choose to go to a very rugged beach. There are no shops, no restaurants, just the pounding ocean and a few miles of unspoiled sand, green dunes and cliffs.
It was actually a little cloudy but not cold so we set up our little day camp.
It was one big golden moment where we were all just happy to be in such a beautiful spot with no-one around. We dipped our toes in the frigid Pacific ocean (don't be fooled people - if you're not south of LA the Pacific is cold, very cold.)
We gathered rocks and shells, we ate our picnic. Lovely.
We then decided to make sand sculptures. We did a big family project - a dolphin. We then spit off to make one each.
An octopus, a turtle, a baby turtle and a big hole.
(Two year olds find it hard to grasp the concept of sculpture.)
If I do say so myself they were spectacular. We all felt very proud. It seemed dessert was in order so we ambled back to our 'camp' and rewarded ourselves for our hard work.
Enter VERY LOUD family.
You know the kind. Even although they are only one foot away from each other - they shout everything,
"HONEY, WOULD YOU LIKE A JUICE BOX?"
"A JUICE BOX?"
"WHAT KIND DO WE HAVE?"
and so on.
We were a little disgruntled that they were disrupting our tranquility but we know we have to share.
Then the kids, four boys and two girls came over to look at our sculptures.
Before I could even say 'hello' they had stomped them.
I asked them to stop - they didn't.
Well, I should say the boys didn't. The oldest girl yelled for her mom.
Mom was doing, her nails, texting, smoking pot or some other thing. She ignored her daughters somewhat frantic call.
I firmly requested they stop. They didn't.
To help enforce my request the two girls started throwing rocks at their brothers.
I want you to note I said rocks - not stones or pebbles. Rocks.
They didn't stop.
"Mom - you need to come get Josh - he's wrecking this."
"I am talking honey...."
I chased them away with a big stick. OK I didn't really but I gave them my Paddington Bear Hard Stare and they retreated.
The older kids ran back to tell.
"THEY WRECKED SOME PEOPLES STUFF? WHAT?"
They packed up and left.
Works for us.
They said nothing to us. They said nothing to their kids.
I judged those parents. I judged them under my breath and to their backs.
I am still judging them now - so sue me.