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Why You Should Take Candy From Strangers

2013 October 12
by Pamela

Lydia, our two-year-old, can be a little…well, let’s just say she is a toddler and she acts like one.  There are days she smiles radiantly and says “Mommy, I want you Mommy. I yuv you so much Mommy, so much”.   Those days feel like a ray of warm sunshine is beaming on our home and family.

Then there are other days, like last week, when I tried to make a quick trip into Kroger with all three kids to pick up groceries for a friend.  Lydia was NOT having it, did NOT want to be in that store, did NOT want to be in that cart and told me with venom in her voice “I hate you Mommy” over and over and over and over again.  Nothing will make you want to ram your cart into the boxes of cereal like hearing the child you carried in your womb for nine months, then nursed for 14 months and 3 weeks tell you how much she hates you.  I was totally about to do a Bill Cosby “I brought you into this world kid and I’ll take you out of it” on her.  To which she would have replied “I hate you”.

But yesterday Lydia and I dropped the big girls off at art class, then ran to CVS.  It was a beautiful day – unseasonably warm and sunny.  But I’ve been feeling so lonely lately and this cloud won’t seem to lift from me.  Lydia was as happy as could be though because I let her carry the little red basket.  She walked through, happily adding random items to it and agreeably returning  them when I told her we didn’t need four new pairs of tweezers because Mommy still can’t figure out how to tweeze her eyebrows at the age of 38.  A sweet older man walked by and Lydia holds out her hand and loudly says “Hi!  I YiYYa”  I translated her name to the older man, he shook her hand and said “How are you?” to which she replied, “Um good.  I shopping!  This is Mama!”  I’m telling you, it was like she was running for mayor or something.   We went through the rest of the store and after she made friends with every last person in the joint, we went to check out.  The sweet older man approached me in line and asked if he could buy her a present.  It was the sweetest thing.  And he bought me chocolate!  I’m going to see about adopting him.

Lydia walked out with a pillow pet night light, I walked out with Cadbury.  She walked out with the full expectation that everyone in the world loves her and I walked out remembering how even a stranger has great power to influence your day.

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