PLEASE Don’t Do This

My husband and I take much pride in our children’s accomplishments. We are, afterall, their parents, so someone has to, right? I’ll admit, being alone most of the time with two and three year old has some pretty tough times but NOTHING could make me do what I saw a “stupid” mom do.

By definition, the word stupid means “lacking intelligence OR common sense”. There are many other definitions that pretty much share the same commonality. I walked my three year old into her gymnastics practice on a random Thursday morning. I see the same moms there that I see every week, and it’s usually a time to discuss how our week went and pretend to be as enamored with each other’s kids as we are our own. This time a different mom was there whom I’ve never seen before. With her were these two adorable blonde toddlers, about five years old, sitting together. Both had beautiful blue eyes and porcelain skin and my first thought was that they must be new to the class, how cute! Well, my friends, that thought bubble had burst.

The little girl, (I’ll call her Sally), was sitting and patiently waiting for the class to begin when out comes this HORRENDOUS cough. It was, to me, very indicative of croup, which is extremely contagious. If it wasn’t croup, it was surely bronchitis. Either way, Sally clearly was not feeling well. After a few minutes, the same cough comes out of her brother’s (I’ll call him Sam )’s mouth. This poor child was clearly in clothes that were atleast two sizes too small for him, and they both looked as though they hadn’t been bathed in a few days. Both had red cheeks, and hair that looked like it had been styled with honey it was so knotty.

“Okay gang! Time to warmup!”, exclaims the coach, as the five little tots all parade onto the mats. Might I add that Sally and Sam were both in their pajamas. I looked at my mom friends and because I don’t know them that well, I didn’t say anything. But they know that my daughter gets sick very easily and they know she has had quite the uphill climb since birth. So all three moms mentioned to me that both of these kids were extremely sick and before I had gotten there, they were even worse than what I had seen. Great. Juuuuuuuust great. Now what do I do? Pull her out of class? It’s not fair to her to do that. So I talk to the coach and ask her to avoid high-fives and hand holding today if at all possible. Clearly, that would not prevent germs from being spread but it was a thought.

I look around, and the mother is nowhere to be found. She’s now talking to the owner on the other side of the lobby not paying a bit of attention. Here’s where she becomes stupid. (To me, she already is, but I’ll let you be the judge). She had already been there about twenty minutes when we all hear her say, “Okay well I’ll be back to pick up the other two, I am going to go to the store. I have the baby in the car right now. See ya!”. JUST. LIKE. THAT. I looked at the other moms and wondered if I was the only one that had heard that, and apparently I was not since they all had a look on their faces that said, “I am calling CPS.” Yes, she not only proceeds to leave her toddlers at the gym, which is NOT a daycare, but left her baby in the car!

Next thing I know, Sam is picking his nose and coughing up phlegm all over the very mats that these little cherubs were practicing on. I just wanted to give these little beauties a hug and some Tylenol. It’s amazing to me that parents are so inconsiderate. Ok, so you don’t care about the possibility that they could get other children or adults sick. Fine. How about thinking about the fact that your babies just do not feel well. I don’t know about you, reader, but if you were to put a toddler in a gym where there is nothing to do but to flip and jump around, I doubt you’d see them laying on the mats like I did. Clearly, these children both had fevers just by their lethargy. Okay, forget the fact that I have a medical background and that I know what I am talking about and that I know what I am looking at. It doesn’t take a medical background, a degree of any kind, or even child bearing to know what to do when someone, especially a little child is not feeling well. But STUPID moms leave their kids in cars unattended. STUPID moms leave their disheveled unkempt children for others to look after while they go and do “more important” things. STUPID moms have the mentality that “well it’s just a cold.”

Okay, here is the low-down on colds. It may just be a cold. (Not in this case). It may be allergies. (Again, not in this case). But if your child seems fine, PLEASE keep in mind that another child may not be fine if this “cold” is passed around. We as parents should be a little less self indulgent and take other little bodies into consideration.

The other moms and I wanted to kidnap these children and give them a warm eucalyptus bath and a nap. But we’d be arrested and then we’d be STUPID for getting arrested.

I must admit though, that as I was looking at my little girl through the glass window as she practices her toe-pointing, I can’t help but be proud that she is clean, healthy, and smiling. I’d much rather be known as the paranoid, hypochondriac mom (I’m not, I’m just thought of as that) than be known as irresponsible, and yes, STUPID. I take my kids to doctors, I am a conservative mom, and I (GASP!) give antibiotics on the occasion *if * needed. You won’t have to worry about me minimizing my child’s snotty drippy boogery nose because that snotty drippy boogery nose more often than not means their resistance is low. They may not be as sick as can be, but they are taking a hit. That requires a slow down for any child.

On behalf of normal SMART moms that would like to keep their kids somewhat healthy this cold and flu season, please keep your OBVIOUSLY sick and unwell child home and in bed where they belong, rather than shaking hands with the healthy ones. No errand is that important.

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