Monday, June 27, 2005

Oversensitive

I know that on some level I probably should, but I really don't feel any guilt about placing AB in daycare every day. When I'm talking with friends of mine with other parenting arrangements (e.g., stay-at-home moms, nannies) I don't feel compelled to extol the virtues of AB's daycare or otherwise pump up his experiences there. I think this is an extension of the fact that I really don't feel guilty that often (and no, I am not a sociopath, really).

So we've established that I don't feel guilt about the daycare vs. nannies vs. staying at home thing. Apparently, though, I do have buttons. And lo, they can be pushed.

I was dropping AB off at daycare the other day. He's recently transitioned to the next-older group of kids, some of whom he's been in classes with before, and some of whom are new to him and me. One of the kids in his class is a really sweet guy (heretofore "Sweet Guy"), and is one of my favorites. Anyway, one morning I was sitting with AB, playing on the floor of his new room with him and some other kids, including Sweet Guy. Well, Sweet Guy's mom, who was dropping him off, comes over and sits with all of us. I've met her at a couple of school social events, and I've seen her once or twice before at morning drop-offs. So, no, we're not close buddies, but yes, I have made her acquaintance.

After we make some small talk, she says, "Are you AB's mom?" Confused, because I swear she already knows me, I say, "Yes."

"Oh, I've never met you before! I've only seen AB's daddy."

Cut to me, face probably turning red from anger (most likely anger caused by guilt, but let's talk about that in a sec), but plastering a dumbass grin on my face. "Oh, yeah, his dad does drop him off mostly. I only drop him off once or twice a week." Once I stopped inwardly seething, I gave my boy a kiss goodbye and stomped off to work.

I still can't figure out exactly what bothered me most about that exchange. Did I feel guilty because here was this other daycare mom, seemingly calling out my lack of participation in my son's daycare life? Except that I think if it was a mom I didn't know who made the comment, I wouldn't have been so put out (after all, there are a number of moms I've never met, and it's precisely because I only drop off AB once or twice a week). So then, was I simply pissed because the person making this comment was someone I have met? Except that my self-esteem isn't so high that I won't forgive someone forgetting they've met me before. I've been in lots of situations where people I've met once or twice before don't remember having met me. Personally, I'm terrible with names, so I'm one to forgive and forget in that arena.

So maybe it was some sort of twisted combination of the two that got me all pissed off. I haven't seen Sweet Guy's mom since that morning. I'm hoping I do see her again. I'm thinking if she and I have a normal conversation, I will quickly put that weird morning behind me and forget all about it. Or maybe she won't remember who I am again and we'll go 'round and 'round in some Groundhog Day loop.

9 Comments:

Blogger liz said...

I dunno, is she on some new medication or off some old medication? You're a pretty memorable person after all. I mean, your pretty hair, your sparkly eyes, your brains. How could she not remember you?

8:50 PM, June 27, 2005  
Blogger SuzanH said...

I hate those situations. In a prefect world, I'd give her the benefit of the doubt and assume she's just flaking. In my reality, I'd harbor a grudge.

Hope you lean toward the perfect world.

10:10 PM, June 27, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Hey! Tony Randall!"

For the record, I've NEVER seen the father of the boy in question. I'm pretty sure. Well, 95 percent sure.

Maybe we need to get the 5-year-old girl who always yells "AB's DADDY, AB's DADDY!" at me to chase you around for a while.

- NSAH

10:12 PM, June 27, 2005  
Blogger Mieke said...

I think it was just a hit to the ego that she didn't recognize you. I drop Jonas off at school once a week, there are plenty of mothers I don't know or forget. I think myself a strikingly memorable person, so I would be crushed if they didn't remember me. You have to keep in mind, she may have been sleep deprived, or just survived a hellish morning with her kid when she met you. Those days are a blur to me too.

Also...as a total aside, apropos of nothing...don't call your client when you just split a bottle of wine with your pediatrician.

10:56 PM, June 27, 2005  
Blogger Angry Pregnant Lawyer said...

I'll keep that in mind, Mieke. ;-)

LOL at the Tony Randall comment, Mr. Short-Term Memory.

Yeah, I tend to forgive and forget, so I'm going to assume she was just flaking. But I'd really like to have another conversation with her, and soon, just to put it all past me that much quicker.

(Liz, if you butter me up like that, I have no choice but to buy your admission to the petting zoo... or maybe our next lunch is on me!)

8:37 AM, June 28, 2005  
Blogger halloweenlover said...

I hear you. Who knows why we get upset about stuff? I have a neighbor who once said to me that I was so lucky to have my husband because he was so good to me, and I was furious! I AM lucky, but so is he! The way she said it made me feel like she thought he was taking pity on me (lowly useless wife that I am).

Maybe she meant it to be an innocuous comment, but I can see why you'd be annoyed.

10:47 AM, June 28, 2005  
Blogger Piece of Work said...

You know, maybe she said that about only seeing AB's dad because as soon as she asked you if you were AB's mom, she remembered having met you several times before. And then felt like an ass, so used the fact that NSAH usually drops AB off as an excuse. I can see me doing something like that. Or she could have been fishing for your name.
In any event, I'm sure she remembers you know, and be much more socially adept at the next meeting!

11:58 AM, June 28, 2005  
Anonymous Kristen said...

Maybe she's jealous. Perhaps that morning she had the fight with her dh that she's been having all year, "How come you can't do any of the daycare drop-offs, dear?"

So, she sees an more equitable marriage and has to throw in a comment.

Just a theory.

I remember all the children...but none of the parents. So I could see myself spacing on the name of another parent too!

12:42 PM, June 28, 2005  
Blogger Yankee T said...

Hey, I know a guy who I had met at least five times and he introduced himself to me every single time. It started to piss me off. He remembered the man I was dating, but never me. Pushed every button in me. It was later revealed that he had, well, um, a drinking issue, and was MORTIFIED every time I reminded him that we had met. Don't take it personally-she's a flake, is my bet.

12:45 PM, June 28, 2005  

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