(I posted this on the Facebook page today – then I remembered a number of you don’t do Facebook – so I’m leaving it here for you – it may resonate for one or two of you...)
Dear parents trying to do the grocery shopping, with small children:
It gets better!
Today, I did the grocery shopping with my 13yr old boy. He pushed the trolley for me from start to finish, he loaded the groceries back into the trolley once they were bagged, he unloaded the groceries from the trolley into the boot of the car.
The days of buying a “cheesy-mite” scroll or a finger bun (bribe) from the bakery before heading into the grocery store are done.
The days of; “please just hold onto the trolley”, “look out for the lady”, “please stop leaping onto every post we walk past”, “please stop jumping from black square to black square, you can walk on the white ones too”, “either get in the trolley or stay on the trolley you can’t keep alternating”, “please don’t stick your leg out as we pass people”, “no, we don’t need any kinder surprises today”, “don’t run across in front of people’s trolleys”, are gone.
Today, as we did our grocery shopping I felt a little nostalgic for those days. Days like the one when we somehow lost “wibbly pig” in the freezer section of Coles, the day the boy jumped onto the trolley and I caught it mid flip. The tantrum on the floor of the grocery store when I said “no” to stopping at Donut King on the way out. Which was, coincidentally, the day of my greatest parenting bluff ever as I stepped over him and said “I’m going to count to three and you’d better get up and follow me” … he did … I sighed with relief. (I don’t ever recommend doing that one, I only ever did it once).
Today, he was the consummate grocery shopping professional, well, the trolley did double as transport for him once or twice, it did also do a couple of unnecessary 360s at the end of an aisle or two, and he did make some helpful suggestions that made it into the trolley … (I was weak, hungry and a little nostalgic at the time).
My boy is growing up … I’m still not sure how I feel about it.
Parents of young children, you will look back on those difficult shopping expeditions with some nostalgia. You may even remember them when you have a helpful teenager (not an oxymoron) and you witness someone in the middle of the worst grocery shopping expedition of her/his life. At that point I recommend that you give them a sympathetic smile, tell them to hang in there, it gets better!
In the meantime, you’re making memories… Happy grocery shopping !!!