Today is the first fay of the inaugural (NOT first annual) Type-A Mom Conference. I’ll bet right now I am running through the Crowne Plaza saying hello to all our attendees as they eat breakfast. My guest post is from the lovely Leslie Doughty. She writes at My Chicka Boom. She describes herself as “designer + artist + mommy + wife + seamstress + foodie + blogger = one creatively sweet life!” Enjoy!
There’s a very interesting phenomenon that happens when I hit the grocery store with my kids. We reach the checkout line at the end of our “fun” (and I use that term very loosely) to see that there are things in my shopping cart that I didn’t put in there. Hot Fudge Sundae pop tarts? Strawberry Moist Supreme cake mix? Hmm, that’s weird; I don’t remember picking those up. How did my 11 y/o manage to sneak in that box of pop tarts anyway? Was it when my son was doing that spontaneous interpretive dance in isle 3 and nearly spun into the 5 foot display of carefully stacked glass applesauce jars? It must have been.
I froze for a moment and thought about how distracted I really am at the market. And how much my kids go to pieces there. It’s like we walk in the door and my kids are instantly reduced to the lowest common denominator of their personalities. My daughter is all, “Look at this Mom…Look at that Mom…What’s this Mom…Why don’t we get one of these Mom…” and my son morphs into some sort of crazy spastic squirrel-boy. What is it about the grocery store that makes kids come unglued? Is it because we Moms have to focus on something else and they can’t stand the attention shifting off of them? Is it the lighting? Maybe it’s the massive walls of brightly-colored packages all competing for their attention?
I stand in front of the conveyor belt with this foreign box in my hand I look at my kids. My daughter is glued to the chewing gum display. My son, who’s already checked-out mentally from what we’re doing, is squatted down looking at the winnie-the-pooh and buzz lightyear lighted-spinning pens on the bottom shelf. Is it any wonder that they get crazy in a place like this? I figure it must be part of some sick conspiracy between the government and grocery stores. We, the Moms, and our offspring are the lab rats. Yeah, that’s it. They’re trying to see just how much Mothers can really put up with; somehow measuring our breaking points. I imagine there’s some sort of twisted algorithm for how much distraction we can take divided by the speed at which we’re pushing our cart, times the frequency of items placed it. And just like the rat at the end of the maze, we get food pellets as a reward. I think next time I’ll take my husband along just to throw them off and wear a tshirt that reads “Back off, I’m just here for the food.”
Leslie Doughty lives in Stuarts Draft, Virginia where she is a freelance graphic designer, branding consultant, writer, blogger, artist, kitchenista and most importantly, wife & mother. She’s also a frequent buyer of groceries and someone who tries to find humor and inspiration in the seemingly mundane tasks of life. You can check out her blog at http://mychickaboom.blogspot.com