Hey Mama at the park today,

Hey Mama at the park today,

You were nursing your babe and playing with her chubby little hand, all the while your toddler was aggressively licking the slide. I didn’t bring it to your attention because 1) I didn’t want you to feel judged on account of your kid’s tactile curiosity, 2) far be it from me to interrupt a babe’s meal and a mom’s oxytocin high, and 3) I wanted to gift you a moment free of ‘oh, come on!’  

I quickly directed your kid to my toddler’s imaginary jungle land and informed him of the emergency banana-picking mission in progress. He sweetly obliged me, despite my own son’s grotesque nose digging. It lasted all of 3 minutes, which must be as long as three year olds can give attention to imaginary falling coconuts and crazy monkeys.

Thanks for not judging me for letting my son pee behind the bushes or lugging my screaming 18-month old like a piece of luggage all the way to the car. We made it, if you wondered.

I think all I said to you was a heart-felt: ‘Hi, thanks for breastfeeding!’


What I could’ve said, if I wasn’t distracted with my own could-be-catastrophes, was: “You are a good mom. You and I need each other. To help each other’s kids from licking slides and eating their boogers. To give each other the freedom to mother in our own way. To value our children enough to work hard at helping them become kind and compassionate human beings. To encourage each other in the early years while we experiment with disciplinary tactics and culinary creativity. To help each other ‘shake it off’ when we have a bad mom moment(s). To model patience. To bring coffee. To share regrets and lessons learned. To strategize ways to be awesome in our occupational or volunteer responsibilities, without sacrificing our cherished role as mom and wife. And, to listen.”

Had I not been concerned that you’d think I was too invasive, I would’ve told you about a local opportunity to share your own thoughts on motherhood.

Motherhood Speaks: Open Mic Night on April 16th, 7pm. For all women, not just mothers, to share their motherhood-inspired poetry. An amplifier for those words burning in your soul. A space to be encouraged by others. A time to breath, laugh, cry, cry some more and learn.

Peace + love,

Mom of booger-boy and his sassy pants sister

Katie Dunning1 Comment