A few weeks ago we were camping in Dubuque, Iowa. We met my mom and stepdad for the Memorial Day weekend. Talk about a great time! Tutu and Papa hanging out, buying ice cream from the ice cream truck, hiking, running wild, digging in the mud, laughing and giggling until far too late in the night. It was right on the river and the campground was full to the brim.
Tons of people surrounded us. People in tents, RV's, people riding bikes, walking dogs, exploring, having camp fires, talking, laughing, people playing games, letting loose and enjoying the scenery, blood sucking mosquitos, the cool river air on your face, the wind in our hair. We hiked, we walked, we played, we explored. We all went to the weekend Farmers market. The kids, Ryan and I went on a hike and did some exploring. Mom and Mark went gambling. Memories were made and will kept close to our hearts.
Our last afternoon, we went to a park to explore. It was set high on a hill overlooking the river. There were kids everywhere, cookouts filled the air, adults letting loose while kids climbed on the play ground. My mom and Mark watched the kids while Ryan and I took off on a walk. We came back to find Luca running with a stick (per usual for that kid no matter how many times you tell him not to), Grayson running wild around the play ground and Bella making friends with anyone she came in contact with. All normal kid stuff.
As Ryan and I were coming back, we stayed close to the kids and watched as they all did their own thing. Bella came to meet a little boy who was climbing on the outside of a tunnel slide. The boy looked at me and said "I don't mean this in a mean way but she's a creepy kid. I watch tons of horror movies and she's really creepy. I don't mean to sound rude but for real."
I think my face turned 50 shades of red and my stink eye was in full force. It took everything I had not to knock that kid out. I mean really, where on God's green earth were his parents? Here he was talking to me, a complete and total stranger, looking a real hot mess and no one came to see what he was up too.
Bella replied "That's not real nice you know, that doesn't make people feel good".
"I mean it's true you are a creepy kid"
She looked at me, her right hand holding and covering her left hand. I smiled at her and looked that rotten kid straight in the face. "Well that's not nice at all, calling someone creepy isn't nice even if you don't mean to sound rude. It is rude and watching horror movies as a kid is not cool at all, that's really creepy!"
He looked at me and said "well it's true"
I looked straight at my daughter and ignored that kid. "Bella let's go. That kid is not nice, he's being rude and calling names and he's not the kind of kid you want to play with at all. You don't want to play with kids like him. He's not a nice boy. Let's go grab some pizza"
Off we went... Not my proudest mom moment but I did the best I could given the situation. Was he saying it because of her hand? No clue. Do I care? Not really. I did the best I could given the situation, that's all we really can do as parents. We do the best we can with what we have. In all honesty, I should've done better. I bit my tongue as much as I could. I wanted to find his parents but I didn't. It wasn't worth my time.
Weeks later, she mentioned it again. I reminded her that we don't want to talk to kids like that. I also reminded her that kids that call names are not the kinds of kids we want to be around. We want to be around people that give us positive energy. We want to be around kids that don't treat other people poorly and make people feel bad. Those people that make us feel bad, those people aren't worth our time. I hope in that moment, I did the best I could in her eyes. That's what really matters!
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