I still can’t decide if she deserved it or not, my yelling at her. Ok, maybe no one deserves to be yelled at by a stranger but I do maintain that I have a point:
It was a gorgeous Chicago morning. The kind we all dream of to help us survive the bitch ass winters here. I wanted to sit on my bitch ass and lounge around the house, perhaps I should have listened to that internal cueing – I did not. We were having folks over for dinner that night and groceries were needed. The store was 4 blocks away and I was accustomed to walking my neighborhood errands, 4 year old son and 7 months pregnant belly in tow, while I pulled along our little cart. You are not fully urban until you have walked to the grocery store and pulled the stuff back in your little pull along. I am fully urban to the 28th degree (no 27th degree would just not be urban enough to define me).
It all started when my son Night wanted to buy watermelon (hell yeah I will blame my meltdown on my 4 year old’s desire for healthy food!). How could I deny him this grocery store request? Got the fucking watermelon. It took up so much space in my little cart (and the fact that I had somehow decided this was the time to buy extras of things we needed and stock the pantry) that I ended up with 3 extra bags to carry. Damn it, now I had a kid and half, a pull cart FULL of groceries, and 3 bags to carry home. Off we started.
The cart was too full and the bananas on top kept falling off like every 5 steps. I finally handed them to Night and said, “Son, I need your help. The cart is too full. Please carry the bananas.” The next block and half went something like this:
Night: The bananas are too heavy!
Me: Carry the bananas Night.
Night: But they are SOOOOOOO heavy (insert 4 year old whiny voice)!
Me: Carry the bananas Night (insert snippy maternal voice)!
Night: I’m too tired, the bananas are too heavy, I CAN NOT CARRY THE BANANAS (insert 4 year old whiny voice now at a shrill pitch and half yelling)!
Me: NIGHT! STOP WHINING AND CARRY THE BANANAS! (insert voice of complete maternal exasperation and the “if only I thought it were ethical to drop kick my child” sentiment).
The above dialogue rolled on as sweat began to roll down our backs and we carried and pulled our way toward our home. We had just made it through a major intersection when she walked up to me. Sweet, sugar faced, and dressed in Jesus approved clothing she moved toward me. In her hands were a stack of religious tracks, she smiled and pulled one off the pile and asked, “May I give this to you Mam?”
Tic, tic, tic, tic, BOOM: “DO I LOOK LIKE I CAN CARRY ANYTHING ELSE???” I shouted at her.
And then because I had not yelled at her enough I moved on to gesture towards my very pregnant belly, son beside me, and groceries and say, “7 months here! 4 years there and all this ARE YOU KIDDING ME?”
She stood dumb founded, eyes wide, and slowly drew her extended hand back in toward her body. She said nothing, perhaps she was quietly praying for me, asking the Lord to help her through such persecution and save my lost and angry soul.
Night and I continued our procession home. The bananas fell again and as we paused to pick them up I looked back at her. She was glaring at me in disgust and puckered her lips when her eyes met mine. I gave her glaring eyes and a slight pissed off head shake back and carried on my way. I resumed arguing with my child about the weight of bananas until we were home and plopped down on the couch, our urban adventure behind us.
I don’t know if hindsight is 20/20 but it sure is fucking funny and so as I sat there I began to laugh at the incident and our ill fated dramatic walk home. It is a given that I did not handle myself with the Zen like goddess filled serenity that I aspire to. Nothing to assess there so I moved on to judging the religious track pimpet, and that’s more fun anyway.
I still felt badly for yelling at her, but as I thought about it I felt less and less bad for my actions. Forgive me for pinning irritation with much of the religious community on this one poor gal but: it is just so fucking annoying how she was hell bent on giving me what she thought I needed while completely turning a blind eye to what I really needed. I mean if she had said something like, “Wow, looks like you are juggling a lot there, can I help you carry those bags for the next block and give you this pamphlet?” I actually would have accepted. Not because I want to read about her religious views but I really could have used a hand. I would have thought her kind and totally spared her my wrathful rant. But she offered nothing except her agenda.
So go ahead and pray for my bitch ass pamphlet girl. Likewise I will hope for you that you find something more meaningful to do with your faith than simply talk about it. I sure as hell think Jesus would have fucking offered to carry my groceries.