Don’t think you can escape Valentine’s Day.

12 Feb

Walt and I cruised through the grocery store today for some last minute Fat Tuesday items. They were chocolate glazed donuts and Hershey Kisses. I am giving up sweets for Lent but not before I fill my tummy to its sugary brim. And to test my skills at self-denial, I will be attending a cookie party on Thursday that promises to tempt me with dozens upon dozens of delicious delectables I won’t be able to eat. That is actually what the Hershey Kisses are for. The donuts are just because.

Kroger, since I was there a week ago, has become a gauntlet of Valentine’s propaganda. Even though I am happily married, I still don’t care for Valentine’s day. I try to show my love to my family and my sweet husband every day of our lives. I already give presents for our two anniversaries (wedding and the day we met), Christmas, birthdays… another day would be just too much. But Kroger makes you think otherwise. To get to the checkout line from the dairy aisle, you must pass through the eye of the needle! You must be swayed by the passionately colored items for sale!

The Gauntlet

I mean honestly, what do they do with all the leftovers after Thursday? Maybe I’ll buy Dave a half off balloon and we can celebrate the day after Valentine’s.

You can't resist this!

I was doing self-checkout like I always do, baby in one hand and the other trying to perform the function of both hands, when the checkout lady offered her assistance. I declined this time (I have learned to accept help occasionally!), but it is so nice how helpful people are when they see you with a baby. It has been pretty amazing how people react when you have a child. First, you get pregnant, and when people know they are very excited for you, ask you when you are due, talk about their children, tell you how much you are going to love having a [insert gender here]… and then you have the baby. People hold open doors, help you with bags, tell you how cute your child is (like the very sweet lady today who stopped me on my way out just to tell me I had the cutest baby)… and generally just have a smile on their face because they see the baby. They laugh when the baby makes a face or even tolerate it when the baby cries.

I wonder, however, when this all changes. At what age do they start giving you dirty looks when your child cries, and when do they not think you need extra help? Then, on my end, how old will my child be when I call the cops because some stranger stops me to tell me my little boy is oh so cute? Eventually that would be creepy.

But for now I am just awed at how society rallies around its children and their mothers. Every little bit is noticed, helps, and makes my day a lot better. I try to pass it forward, so the message of kindness will continue in this consumer-ravaged world.

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