It finally happened.
I knew eventually the day would come. It happens to all of us moms at some point...
The dreaded inconsolable breakdown at Target, complete with judgemental stares from people who have forgotten what it’s like to have a baby.
All we needed was new sheets for the bed. Pop in, pop out — that was the goal. I knew the poor girl was exhausted. We’d had a long day of errands already, and she was sick of laying in her car seat. In an attempt to save myself from a scream-filled ride home, I even sat in the parking lot and fed her before going in. She fell asleep on my chest, but I knew we’d be quick. We went for it.
We rounded the corner to the home decor section, and her baby blues popped open. They locked onto mine, and then the sweetest little lip quiver began upon the realization she was no longer in my arms.
I smiled at her and shushed and held her hand, but it was too late. She wailed. And I mean WAILED. And I couldn’t get her to stop. It didn’t take long to notice the glances around me. Unfortunately, there were no comforting, “I understand mama” nods coming my way. Maybe next time I’ll get lucky.
But all we needed was sheets, so I pressed on, shushing and rocking and cooing at my baby while she ugly cried allllll the way to the front of the store, through the checkout experience, into the car, and out of the parking lot where she conveniently stopped & fell asleep thanks to the motion of the car. LOL.
And you know what I thought to myself?
“That wasn’t so bad.”
For some reason, I was always anxious for this moment as a parent. Maybe it has to do with my struggle over perfectionism, or because I constantly battle people-pleasing. Maybe it’s the pride — that first time in public when I can’t hide behind the image of being a mom that has it all together.
But the reality is that none of us are truly that mom.
We can’t control our kids. We don’t have it together all of the time. And that’s okay.
Just let it go mama. Remember this: your babies’ actions are not a reflection of your worth. You are loved by your Creator whether or not your kids behave in a store. You are noticed even if you can’t put the “honor roll parent” sticker on the back of your minivan. You’re valuable whether or not your teenager makes the team.
All we can do is give our best to our families for the glory of God, and we trust Jesus to fill in our gaps. Release your grip on control & the perfect image, and be encouraged by this truth today -- “but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” -Romans 5:8
While we were still sinners, y’all. Not once we had it all figured out. There is grace for us in the middle of the linens aisle while we console our screaming children. Because of that, it’s really not too bad.
Target on, mama. Cheers!