Yesterday, I was standing in an aisle in Walmart. Staring at the shelves for something I just knew should be there, but wasn't. You know that stare...the one where you're looking in your refrigerator, just hoping if you look long enough, something you want to eat will magically appear. Empty vacant stare Not seeing what you want. Wait, is that it? Yeah? No, false alarm. THAT stare.
At any rate, while I was intently looking, to the corner of my awareness came people pushing a cart. My staring contest was slightly interrupted by a youngish male voice saying, "Well that's just stupid, Mom." To which said mom replied quietly, "Please don't speak to me like that." I continued staring for my desired item.
The very next statement the kid made was, "Well it is Mom, sometimes you sound dumb as shit!"
And I truly don't know what possessed me, but before I knew it, I could feel my eyes blazing, and I whipped around and to the kid I said, "Excuse me, young man, I do not know you but I will tell you this: don't you ever speak like that again. This woman is your MOTHER and she deserves your respect. She most certainly does not deserve to be spoken to like that EVER! Especially not from you and especially not in public where others can hear your ignorance and wonder about how stupid you sound!!!" There was a split second of shocked silence...I think all three of us were shocked.
The kid mumbled, "Well, she just sounds dumb sometimes!" I felt the possession growing as I replied,"You don't get to say that to me or anyone else. She is your MOTHER!" He looked down and turned red.
Here's the funny thing. While I was having the exchange with that kid, the woman standing beside me started to alter her being. I could feel her energy change. She was round shouldered and small when this got started, but I swear to you I could feel her shoulders pull back and her head come up and she felt secure...quiet...but secure. It was so odd to feel that shift.
The kid mumbled petulantly, "I think I'm going to go wait in the car." And both of us together said, "Good idea!"
I turned to walk away but before I left, I said to Mom, "Please forgive me for getting involved in your private business. It's just that I know he was raised better than that, and you certainly deserve better than that from him." She looked at me and said, "Oh don't worry about it, you're right, he was raised better than that." She never acknowledged the most important part which is that she deserves better. That's a real shame.
Here's what makes me wonder now in this age when we can no longer truly parent, discipline, correct, admonish, direct, or punish our kids for fear of social or legal retribution: How do we deal with them when they become so emboldened that they have no idea of the limits? How do we deal with them when we have entitled them to hold us emotionally and mentally hostage? Like the boy yesterday in public, speaking like that because he probably knows his mother's not going to take the risk of lowering the boom and being thought of as a bad parent? How is that in any way fair?! Just? How is it in any way good for a young person to have the world cow-tow to them and never get the crap smacked out them for being rude, mean, tyrannical? Why do we no longer believe in taking the immediate, sometimes harsh, measures necessary to gain an attitude adjustment?! Why is their personal self-esteem more important than their manners and civility?
We become increasingly alarmed at the lack of civil connection young people seem to exhibit. We bemoan how they all act as if it's all about them with never a thought about those around them. We scream about the increase in bullying. The increase in petty meanness. Yet we don't seem to make the connection between the increase in terrible behavior with the way we have abandoned some basic tenants of parenting! The need to discipline, punish and set limits is a necessary part of parenting. It's the key to turning a young wild animal into a Human Being fit for living in, and contributing to, society! Setting limits is part of loving a young Spirit...so is just discipline. They are actually a form of love just as much as a hug and a kiss.
How did we allow this world to turn the need to set limits, require one to speak in a respectful, civil way, and basic discipline of a young person into a sin and a crime?!
Oddly enough as I walked away, I realized all that time I was in the wrong aisle; I wanted the next aisle over. That's where the hot sauce I was searching for is shelved.
Namaste' Till Next Time,
Holly aka The Thunder