So I’m in the grocery store with Carter after leaving Vacation Bible School. He asked me if he could push the buggy instead of ride and I said yes. Big Mistake.
He grabbed the handle and started pushing like a maniac, almost taking out a table of BOGOs and an innocent bystander. So, me, in all my mama-ness grabbed the cart and brought it to a stop. I redirected, explained buggy-pushing rules and we tried again.
And off he went. Again. At the speed of light.
So, once again I grabbed the buggy, redirected and explained buggy-pushing rules. And all was good for a couple of aisles.
Then he decided it would be fun to push real fast, drag his feet, and slide. So I’m at the front of the buggy, steering, trying to prevent calamity, and every few seconds there is a giant push followed by an almost complete stop while he tries to slide his feet. This was funny the first few times and then I told him no more sliding.
So instead of sliding, he decided that he wanted to try and crash into everything. Definitely not happening. At this point I took over pushing and told him he had to ride (which could have prevented all of this craziness from the beginning).
We got to the self-checkout and Carter was helping by handing me things (after he climbed up on the counter when I turned my back, mind you). Then he got down and started pushing the cart back and forth into my legs. I walked around, got down on his level, looked him in the eyes and realized he had absolutely no idea why I was so aggravated. He was just grinning with those big, innocent blue eyes. I told him he had to stop pushing the cart into mama and that he now was confined to the cart for good. He just smiled and said okay. The he asked if he could hold my hand. Wow. It stopped me in my tracks.
My aggravation level was rising, but he was having the time of his life. I had a mission. I needed to get in and out and then home so we could get settled in for the night. He had a mission, too. He wanted to have the most fun possible no matter what. Pushing, sliding, crashing, and climbing; these were all of the things that excited him and he just couldn’t get enough of them.
Here Carter was, having the time of his life…And mama was about to pull her hair out.
It’s all about perspective, isn’t it? When I realized he was just being a kid, I could feel all of the tension in my face completely relax. It’s hard to realize things like this in the heat of the moment. He’s not an adult. He has no idea how to even begin to be one and I can’t expect him to understand life from an adult perspective. He’s a kid and he is all about having fun; I just have to do a better job of setting parameters and boundaries.
And all of you seasoned mamas out there are just chuckling as you remember time after time with your own kids…