I had a bit of a reality check the other day.
Dave and I were in Ikea, and had just spent about three hours on our mission to get all the things. I had compiled a list on the Ikea site - because I've nominated myself for spouse of the year - and printed it out. That being said, Ikea is still a huge place and there were still things on my list which were not accompanied by the handy 'where to find this item' that comes with the warehouse part of the expedition. So, by the time we reached the warehouse, and despite the obligatory break for meatballs in the food court (with the also obligatory screaming, overstimulated and tired children) - we were pretty tired.
I had a trolley packed with all things Scandinavian chic, and Dave was lumbering behind me with an equally large, though significantly heavier and therefore more unwieldy, trolley full of Besta tv cabinet packages. In addition we had Harlem obediently heeling by my side and attracting all the 'ooh's and 'aah's and threatened patting incidents to draw his attention (he truly loves people and despite his pawsome training was also tired and distracted by all the hustle and bustle).
Therefore, when I encountered a miniature human, around 18 months, skipping and tripping around the busy warehouse isle, I called back to Dave, 'Beware the free ranged kid!'. There was nothing judgemental in my warning, it was just a warning so my hyperfocused husband didn't inadvertently barrel into the toddler if the tot suddenly popped out from behind a display of Kallax shelving.
The proud father, who had not appeared in any way to be following the actions of the little person, even by eye, felt the need to correct me, 'Yes, the free range CHILD'. Evidently, he had attended the advanced course in 'stick up your butt, defensive parenting techniques'.
I didn't acknowledge him. It wasn't worth it. What was I going to say? 'Oh, I totally get what you're doing, I also brought my children up in the 'Continuum Parenting', 'Free-range' (trademark) tradition, I'm certainly not criticizing you, I just didn't want my husband to maim your CHILD, because it seems you would probably sue us, you great entitled asshole.'
I have to wonder, was I ever like that? Did I ever look down my nose at people who used words that were not culturally offensive, but didn't fit in with my parenting religion?
Gee, I hope not.
Maybe this was Karma?
In any case. Woe-behold the person who does run that poor little innocent over because daddy doesn't get that those Continuum CHILDren in the Amazon, were never expected to navigate the treacherous terrain of an Ikea warehouse at 5pm on a Saturday afternoon. I mean, tigers are nothing like tired nine-month-pregnant ladies with sore feet and itchy bellies, let alone their grumpy, 'How much longer is this going to take? My god, she said just a few things!' partners.
Oh well, he'll probably get over himself by the time Precious is running rip-shod over the 'inclusively consulted and agreed upon' social behaviours in the home...
Good luck to him.
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