To all parents who have listened with horror and embarrassment as your child made a comment, boldly and directly to a guest, about their body type, and handled the situation with grace and dignity . . .
I salute you.
I’m quite sure that my response to Zane’s comment last evening would NOT be described as graceful, as I’d describe it more as bumbling and stumbling around an awkward silence, and yet I do have to give myself some points for at least maintaining my physical composure, even if my verbal response was a bit clunky.
In 7 years of parenting I have never had to respond to a child’s truthfulness gone tabloid.
“Mommy! She’s having a baby!”
Silence. Some type of waving gesture with with my hands to communicate,”he’s nuts”, in lieu of actually attempting to speak, and then a carefully placed, “No, no Zane” and a quick shift onto another topic.
Harper sat there drinking warm milk with her big, blue eyes bulging out of her head.
She knew we were in dangerous territory and thus remained completely quiet.
As my guest was heading to leave, having not given any response to Zane, and seeming just fine, HE DID IT AGAIN . . . this time whispering in my ear at a volume of an overacted stage whisper which could be heard by an entire house of audience members, “MOMMY! SHE’S NOT HAVING A BABY?”
My guest bent down and was very gracious while she shared that she had already had her babies and that she wasn’t having anymore.
We said our goodbyes and I set out to attempt to explain to Zane that we don’t ask people about the babies in their tummies. I’m pretty sure he didn’t quite get the point. But, I had to try. His only response?
“Oh. Some people have double tummies?”
Harper’s head dropped to the counter. Thunk.
Yeah, sure. However, let’s not talk about the double tummies that we see either.
I realize that discretion is not necessarily a trait of 3 year olds, and that one can overlook this social hiccup, seeing as it wasn’t made by a 7 year old . . . or a 39 year old . . . but rather a boy of 3, but it’s still uncomfortable.
Harper never entered this territory when younger.
This one, however? I’ll have to watch. More new parenting worlds to forge!