The first time it happened, we were at the playground. Another mother walked by, waved, and called out, “Hi, Big!” My son gave a small wave and went back to playing. I asked him who the woman was and he nonchalantly answered, “Miss Lisa” and then skipped away. I found it a little odd that a mother would greet my child yet not introduce herself to me. I don’t actually have a problem with people talking to my kids, though, so I forgot about it.
A few weeks later, my mister and I had both boys at our local school’s biannual consignment sale. He was herding the kids while I was snapping up the bargains. Lots of mamas were there. My mister suddenly grabbed my elbow and said that a woman had approached the boys, greeted them by name, patted their heads and walked away, all while he was only an arm’s reach away. He pointed the woman out to me and I had no idea who she was. Again, I found it odd but again, I shrugged it off.
Then came the day when our nanny offhandedly mentioned that yet another person had assumed she was the boys’ mom when they were out in public together. I was unreasonably bothered by this. “Unreasonably” because really, why wouldn’t people assume that? She’s fantastic with them, she shows them tons of love, she’s always teaching them things, and she keeps them in line — just like their mother would.
My boys are regulars at the local library; it’s like their second home. They go there with the nanny at least twice a week. Big and Little know all the librarians by name (and not just the ones in the children’s section). My boys are like Norm on “Cheers” when they go to the library; everybody knows their names. I sometimes even get emails from friends or fellow bloggers who write, “Hey! Saw your boys at the library today! They were so adorable/well-behaved.” I love getting these messages and hearing the praise even if it makes me a little sad that I couldn’t be there with them.
So it makes sense that mothers at the playground, at the consignment sale, or at other places would know my kids. I get it now. After four years of the nanny taking one or both boys on outings, I’m getting used to it. Of course it still needled me the two separate times someone asked if I was the nanny. I quickly corrected them while at the same time appreciated the fact that our nanny loves Big and Little as if they were her own.
It still bugs me, too, when people address my kids but not me. If you see us on the playground, feel free to greet my kids, but then approach me, too. “Hi, I’m so-and-so and I know your kids from such-and-such.” Who knows, we might even become friends. Or at least I won’t think you’re rude.
What do ya’ll think, is it rude or am I just being all Miss Manners-y?