Wait… let me rephrase that. Other than teamwork, patience, diligence, and all that other positive role-model junk, I never thought the winter Olympics would teach me a valuable parenting lesson. There; much better!
It’s funny how, unless it’s Olympics time, I could not give two shits less about sports. Then for about two weeks every two years, I become a total sports enthusiast. I know all the stats, the facts, the scores, and I sit glued to my television chanting USA! USA! USA!
My favorite winter Olympic sport? Ice Skating. I have no idea why; DON’T YOU BLAME IT ON BEING FEMALE!
I cheer, I cringe, I secretly hope for the skaters from other countries to fall flat on their asses.
I MUST watch every Ice Skating event, even ice dancing… which I don’t really fully understand, but that’s beside the point. I frickin’ love it. ‘MURICA! Something struck me as odd this time, though. Almost all of the American skating couples look to be a foot apart in height. It’s jarring! Especially when you watch this big huge dude swing by one arm and then hurl this tiny little chick 10 feet across the ice and you swear she’s just gonna bust her face or fly into the wall because she’s just so tiny. I can’t help but to cringe every single time. She can’t be much bigger than Holden!
DING! LIGHTBULB! EUREKA!
A few years ago… gah, at this point I can’t remember if it was before or after Parker was born, but that doesn’t really matter. We were all walking into the grocery store, hand in hand. Me, Thomas, Holden, and maybe Parker. Holden was in between me and Thomas, so he had one of each of our hands. Kid being a kid, he of course wanted us to swing him. Every kid loves that shit! Okay, maybe not EVERY kid, but I’ve never met one who doesn’t. Holden was getting to that age where he thought holding hands was for babies and he was certainly NOT a baby, so when he actually held our hands without complaining, we indulge. Indulging that day meant swinging his heavy ass. Why the hell not?
Well, after a couple of swings we made it to the car, and not even 30 seconds later this little old (and I mean OLD) lady walks right up to me and starts talking. She was so tiny that I couldn’t hear her so, of course, I bent down and maaaaaaaaan I wish I hadn’t because she was SCOLDING me! SCOLDING!!
Apparently, I was a terrible parent for swinging my child. HOW DARE I! I should NEVER do that. I was going to dislocate his shoulders and elbows!
I was floored. I’d never had my parenting criticized by a perfect stranger in a public place before. Online, sure- but never in person. And by a tiny old lady, so thoughts of breaking her little old hips made me feel bad. Nasty old thing, she was.
Look, I know that she isn’t isn’t exactly WRONG- but you don’t go walking up to strangers and scolding them for that shit. Especially after two or three swings. That’s what we call rude. And judgy. And nasty. Gah. It’s not like we were in the winter Olympics swinging the kid around like the chick in the pairs skating event.
DING! LIGHTBULB! EUREKA!
I don’t care that a tiny muscular ice skater isn’t the same as a little kid. Close e-fucking-nough.
Now all I need is a frickin’ time machine so I can travel back to that day, and when that little old lady walks up to me ready to attack my parenting skills, I can yell “HAVEN’T YOU SEEN THE OLYMPICS?!” and she won’t have any damn idea what I’m talking about, but I bet she’d never approach anyone having a good time with their kid to try to shit on it ever again.
Yeah yeah yeah, not likely to ever happen- but at least we all know what to do if it happens again!
Bless you, winter Olympics, for encouraging me to use my words instead of breaking hips.
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