Overheard on a Dundrum escalator

Allow me to set the scene:

I have been up since 4am. Every day this week. The whole family have colds and it is down to me as earth mother extraordinaire to deal with the fallout. I don’t feel like earth mother extraordinaire by the way. I feel like opening the front door and running to Dunnes and begging them if I can stock their freezers all day rather than stay at home.

I am typing this huddled in the dark, hiding from the seven month old, who is napping with one eye open beside me so he can catch me if I try to escape. Last night, he slept, all night long, with one hand grabbing a fistful of my hair and the other pinching my face. I am not in a good mood.

Yesterday, I was not in a good mood either. It seems to be the week for it. The big one punished me for sending out some work emails by refusing to take a nap, so at 1pm I found myself hauling the two of them around Dundrum, amusing them with a bag of those carroty kid crisps that look like Chickatees.

Anyway, I was delighted with myself. Both the boys were having a great time, smearing orangey crisps all over their faces, and I was getting a tiny second of peace. Then, I felt the pointed glare of a woman judging me. “Do you SEE that woman? She’s feeding her kids cheese puffs!!!! Even the BABY!”. A sideways glance revealed a young woman, perfectly groomed – hair extensions, the LOT, leaning in disgust into a woman  I can only presume was her mother. The mother was tutting and shaking her head and saying “I know, I know. It’s an absolute disgrace. Those POOR little kiddies”.

Me. They were talking about ME. If I had been feeling less crap about myself, or having a more peaceful day, I would have shouted in their faces and done some Tyra Banks style finger waving, but I didn’t have it in me. I crept to the car park and deposited my orange, but happy kids into the car, and fled the scene.

So, today I say, before you judge that woman who is giving her kid a milky bar at half seven in the morning, and before you tut at the lady with the five year old in McDonalds, spare a thought for her SANITY.

We are all just doing the best we can, so let’s lay off the bitchy comments, ok?

Right, I am off to prepare a take down speech off by heart so that I can deliver it at will to the next woman who makes a snarky comment about me and my children. And, breathe.



About Ciara McDonnell

Ouch My Fanny Hurts was born in the late stages of my first pregnancy. I was sick and tired of everyone going on and ON about how brilliant it is to be pregnant, when actually, lots of it was quite crap really. And, my fanny hurt a lot. So, I decided to tell the truth about my experience while I was pregnant, and the journey I have been on since, as our little fella grew a little bigger, and we brought our second son into the world in what turned out to be fairly scary circumstances. It’s my story, and I am delighted to share it.
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9 Responses to Overheard on a Dundrum escalator

  1. aj vosse says:

    Give them what for… the condescending so and so’s!!

    Thanks for the early morning smile… on a cold train into Dublin seems the appropriate place to be reading your woes! 😉

  2. Joanna says:

    I LOVE those carrot sticks myself…Even if they were cheese puffs she shouldn’t have said anything. If you were drunk or stoned around your children no-one would have commented because they’d be scared of you.

  3. The newfarmerette says:

    I know the feeling I have used real crisps , biscuits , sweets and tv to get a few minutes piece from the little man and it worked I got my piece so I wouldn’t give a s**t what they thought . I agree with Joanna they wouldn’t have commented as quick if you were stoned or drunk. People are strange , I wonder what did that perfect older woman bribe her child/ children with to get her piece ? because you know she did :))

  4. Heather says:

    People like that just need ignored, we’ve all been known to use bribery now and again (especially going round Tesco by myself with our twin girls). You did what you had to and you shouldn’t be ashamed of it, if it means a peaceful few minutes for you and a few moments of calm for your kiddies then it’s all good (it’s not like that’s all they live on though my youngest would love to attempt it!) xXx

  5. You could retort: “But at least I breastfed my babies!” It’s a great answer for any stare or comment (if you have the balls to say it).
    I’m making a horrible assumption that anyone with such amazing grooming and hair extensions has never tried to breastfeed their baby – Sorry if I’m proved wrong.
    My youngest has the nickname ‘biscuit’ or ‘lollipop’ because to stop him from screaming I would give him biscuits, it was the only thing that worked and he’s slightly obsessed now!

  6. Glitter Mama says:

    Ugh hate judgemental people like that! Don’t even give them a second though x

  7. Oh no! I too was the woman with the orange-faced not-quite-a-toddler and I’m the mum with the THREE year old in McDonalds *shame-faced*

    Okay, shame-face gone. I’m all up for not judging 😀

  8. janembarry says:

    When you get that speech worked up you might consider lending it out! We all need it from to time. We had a week like that here pre-Christmas and I’d have given the kids (and husband) anything to get us through : )

  9. Niamh says:

    I’m that mother in McDonald’s, and not a whit of guilt about it. My friend said something brilliant to me the other day “We’re not meant to be doing this alone” as in “It takes a village to raise a child”, when you remember that you realise you’re doing way more than nature intended you to. Great post!

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