Attention Target Shoppers

Volcanic Mommy rant ahead.
Dont say you weren't warned.

Attention Target Shoppers--yeah, I'm talking to you, lady in the green jacket, near the music. Would you please kindly remove your glaring eyes from my child. Your lack of information is showing and it's not pretty.

You think you know. But you don't.

Yes. I do know what you are thinking. It's written plainly in your glare and I've seen it before. Judgement. Lack of understanding. Condemnation. Sometimes pity, though I don't know why.

Yes. He's 5' tall, weighs 90 pounds and is 11 years old. He looks like a pretty normal young man on the outside, especially to someone who hasn't spoken to him in a conversation or seen him run full-tilt. Or picked him up off the floor after an emotional meltdown. Yes, I realize that it must look odd for his mother to have his foot hoisted onto her bent knee, tying his shoes. But to stare...and glare. Geesh.

I admit you probably don't see it every day...but in the scheme of things is it really such a shocking sight that you feel compelled to stare? And exhibit signs of attitude?

Don't think I didn't notice. I only pray he didn't.

What you don't know is that it's the fourth time today I have stopped to tie his shoes. It took 45 minutes for us to find two actual socks that he could get onto his feet and remain tolerant of until shoes could cover them. He's conviced that sockage is the motherly equivalent of modern day torture devices.

No, it's not something I really understand, but so what.

What you don't know is that I've seen that look before. No, not on your specific face but on plenty others. I recognize it a little too easily now and the pain of it lives right on the top of that part of me that grew in when I became his mother. No. It doesn't get easier. Each disdainful glare shoots a laser guided missile right into my stomach.

Yes, to the uninformed eye, he looks like he should be tying his own boots and wiping his own mouth with a napkin and getting his own zipper zipped and at times, controlling the drool on his lips and enunciating with a great deal more clarity...and a hundred other things I coud list. But the fact of the matter is--he can't.

He can't tie his own boots. His fingers don't work in conjunction with his brain to complete a multi-step process like shoe tying. They just don't. I know. I have tried to teach him. More times than anyone should.

What you don't know is that this child's body is broken, but not in an obvious way. Part of his brain is undeveloped and unusable. It appears on MRIs as a dark spot. Not a mass...just darkness. No electricity. It has not changed since birth and barring something miraculous, it is not going to suddenly come on like a light. It's the likely cause of seizures that bring chaos and havoc on his little life and his not-so-little body and a slew of other challenges--not the least of which is enduring staring, glaring, uninformed people.

Live with that for a minute and then glare at me for helping my son.


Anita said...

YOu are in my prayers Sarah...keep letting the pain flow through your writings...It brings healing. I gives me a different view of your life and I can appreciate that honesty. I love you and miss you so!

Connie said...


Laurie said...

I don't stop to comment very often when I get a chance to visit your blog.
I wish you could have slipped this message to the person yesterday. Just smile and hand it off as you walk by.
Wonderfully expressed Sarah.
I send blessings to your family.

Tania said...

I hear you. I sympathise. I've been there. I'm still there. Hold your head high and ignore the ignorant.
I hope it's ok to share a moment of mine with you.
Once, when my son was young (about 7 months old) my husband and I were force feeding him in a cafe. Two elderly ladies were behind us, and clearly upset with our treatment of our son. Everyone could hear them, plain as day. They were saying things like "look at how they are treating that baby, that baby is falling asleep, for goodness sake, I wish they would let that baby sleep, he is obviously not hungry, how could they do that to their child?" etc etc.
I never said a word, and they did not see the tears in my eyes. They did not see the panic in my husbands face. Ignorant.
My son, was suffering one of his many diabetic lows. He was 5 1/2 months old, diagnosed with diabetes, and I was frantically trying to get sugared milk into his little body to revive him. He has nearly died many times, and those ignorant ladies, so opinionated, had no idea of the hell my family had gone through since the day of his birth.
My son, now 11 years old, is clearly disabled, but I remember oh so well, the glare you saw today, all those years ago. I have seen it many many times.
Hold your head high, you know better than they.(and have a rant and rave every once in a while :)

Anonymous said...

Prayers to you and your son and even a small one for the ignorant lady today. You are doing a good job being a mommy to that little boy!

Lynette said...

Sarah - thank you for sharing your raw anger and motherly indignation. I share so much of it with you in so many ways with my daughter who has a physical disability. Giant hugs to you!!!