20 May 2012

I almost cried in the grocery store on Friday. I'm not much of a crier- excepting the occasional meltdown, not much shakes me to tears. But as I grow older they seem to come more easily.

This was a quarter to six in the evening. I had just finished a 9-hour day at work and I was tired and trying to grab a few items to get through the dinner meal. As I turned my cart onto the chip aisle to get some microwave popcorn, there was a mother with her 2 boys there. The boys were horsing around a bit as kids do, and the mother was scolding them to stop. Suddenly, one of the boys tumbled onto the floor and rolled right in front of my cart. Maybe the brother pushed him. He looked up at me with tears in his eyes and just laid there staring at me. I of course couldn't move because he was blocking my path. It was then that the mother glanced over in his direction and then said to him: I'm going to knock your motherfucking head off.

The kid looked about seven.

I wondered what sort of parent would say that to a child. I wouldn't even say that to someone I hated. I smiled feebly at the little boy and he moved enough for me to wheel my cart past him. I got around to the next aisle and it was then that the tears stung my eyes. What is his life like? How terribly hard growing up must be for some kids. I thought of his sad eyes boring into mine. I thought of the good people in social services and school counseling who spend their lives trying to help these little ones. It must be hard and discouraging.

And then I thought of all the bullshit hoops that adoptive parents have to go through to get their hands on a child to love, when any old unfit idiot who happens to be fertile can have kids.

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