As the mother of a three year old boy, I was shocked when I read this letter to the editor of The Now newspaper saying that pregnant and new moms do not need to have designated parking at the local mall or grocery store and should instead park at the back of the parking lot to get rid of their baby fat.
Sadly, this isn’t the first time I’ve run into this kind of attitude from someone who is not currently raising babies or young children – that it is no big deal and we should just get over it. They have long forgotten how hard it can be:
- slowly waddling around the mall on swollen feet in your seventh month. The ONLY reason you are there is to shop for a list of baby items a mile long. And if you’re lucky, you won’t have to push your giant cartload of boxes, packages and bags of baby stuff too far before you can go home and sleep.
- The panicked blurry-eyed reality of a new mom trying to get to the store with a crying baby to pick up some diapers, only to find that she has forgotten her stroller in her struggle to get out of the house and has to carry 20+ pounds of baby and car seat into the mall instead.
- Walking cautiously through the parking lot with a toddler who is trying to break free, too young and innocent to realize that a car backing out of a parking spot could kill them if they got too close. D@#% right, I’m looking for that designated parking spot – the closer I am to the door, the easier and safer it will be.
- Trying to remove your screaming preschooler from the mall during a tantrum and saying a quick prayer to whatever God you believe in that you found one of the designated parking spots for young families and don’t have too far to go with your flailing child and armful of bags.
While I appreciate the thought about my health, walking further to your car is not the first thing that comes to mind when you are shopping with little ones.
I’m not sure what motivated this letter. Rage that the writer has problems finding parking at the grocery store? But I can tell you that I am disappointed in this example of women criticizing each other instead of supporting one another. We all have different and challenging circumstances. Some of us work. Some stay home to care for our kids. Some have no kids.
But what we ALL need is support. Whether it is a designated parking spot that cuts a pregnant or new mama a break when they are out. A parenting class or support group. A loving family. A moms night out. Or maybe even an anger management class…
If you live in the Tri-Cities area and would like to join a group of moms with babies and young children for friendship, advice and support, please check out the Coquitlam Moms & Dads Group at http://www.meetup.com/tricitymoms/.<