“Why am I such a misfit? I am not just a nit-wit…”
My son wanted to watch Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer today–a whole month after Christmas. As Rudolph and Hermie were waxing prophetic about their misfitedness, I found myself feeling like I needed to escape my own, small, snow-covered town (which is decidedly not snowy and, in fact, a 50-degree-winter beach town, but work with me here!).
Once a week, Bear and I head to the local library’s story time. Beside the fact that I’m still finding my way into this new stay-at-home mom role, I often feel like I have nothing in common with the other moms. I am an admitted eavesdropper (how can you not eavesdrop when your son is looking at Richard Scarry’s Giant Book of Words for the 57 millionth time?), and some of the things I hear make me reel:
“[I decided not to breastfeed] for selfish reasons. It’s just so much work, you know? And I knew I could bottle-feed her anywhere.”
“Do you want to go to McDonald’s? It’s his special treat–library, then McDonald’s…”
“Let’s go get a doughnut, now, okay?!”
“Honey, I don’t think that boy has ANY INTEREST in Strawberry Shortcake.”
The Strawberry Shortcake bit was actually said in reference to my son, who was sitting next to a girl reading the Strawberry S. book, to which I replied nonchalantly, “Oh, he probably doesn’t know the difference! He just sees a brightly-colored book and thinks it looks fun!” However, the other two statements…oy.
Am I being judgmental? Damn straight.
The anti-breastfeeding remarks dismayed me so much that I posted about it on my Facebook wall. The McDonald’s quip also makes me sad. I understand doing something special with your child, absolutely. We all like to have special outings. But why does McDonald’s have to be the reward? Why can’t it be a special fruit, or a book (um, from the library?), a treat you make together, or, gosh, ANYTHING ELSE. Why reinforce the idea that McDonald’s, or doughnuts, are to be coveted as prizes–jewels in the crown of a beautiful childhood? The more I see parents fall to the commercialism of our country, the more I realize that, yes, I am a misfit.
I don’t fit in.
AND I DON’T WANT TO.
Where do you fit in within the circle of parents in your community? Do you find that your parenting decisions make it hard on you or your children?