We went out to dinner last night at a casual, sit down restaurant. The girls and I grabbed a table while daddy stood in line to order food. KC immediately started yelling for “Dadad,” who was standing just around the corner for a solid three minutes. Naturally we gained some attention from near by diners but when she stopped using her toddler voice the attention quickly faded. Except for one nearby table, where a lady sat across from us on the same bench as the young child she was with. The young child hardly noticed us but the lady couldn’t stop staring. After sometime It really started bothering me. I could feel her watching our every move. I’m not talking about the occasional glance and smile as you look off. I’m talking full on staring in the opposite direction of her young dinner companion. The longer it went on the more I started to feel self conscious and wondered exactly what was so entertaining that she’s willing to ignore the kid with her just so she can stare at us. Honestly, I wondered if she was staring because she’d noticed something “different” about KC. My mind went to those crazy momma places wondering if this could be what our future looks like. I wondered if KCs calling for Dad was more disruptive or out of the ordinary than I realized. I even wondered if people are so ridiculous that a grown adult with a child of their own could be so distracted by KCs presence that she couldn’t function normally at dinner table. Clearly I was beyond annoyed. I tried to watch her eyes to see what specifically she was looking at. It was impossible to know for sure. I eventually pointed it out to “Dadad,” who confirmed for me that she was indeed staring. Then, I decided to try to catch her eyes so that I could stare back and give her a moment of the same awkwardness Id been experiencing from her. (Mature, I know) I eventually moved seats to help one of our girl with their meal and my focus was able to shift back to the people at the table that actually mattered. I realized her awkwardness was winning over me and there’s a even a very real possibility she was just staring me down rather than KC. I’d pushed those thoughts aside and when we got up to leave the restaurant I noticed her table was empty and I hadn’t even noticed her get up. The last few days my girls have spent a lot of time playing with neighbor friends. As one of our neighbor friends little girl ran to embrace KC or “Cannady,” as she calls her, I realized that I have a choice. I can be the mom that confronts everyone that looks at my daughter(s) the wrong way and give them a piece of my mind or I can be the mom that’s so caught up in presence of our family and friends that love us that I don’t even notice those staring eyes. I can be angry and hurt or I can be a loving example of how truly typical we are. Today I’m thankful that those loved “framily” members that make it such an easy choice; a choice to be present with those I love showing others a community full of love and acceptance.
KC playing with her neighborhood BFF
KC with some sweet, Fearfully and Wonderfully Made friends modeling their Sweet Petunia Clothing.