Saturday was really hard for me. As usual, we went to soccer practice. The little ones in their orange and white uniforms played in a game against each other. It was hilarious, to say the least. Kids were running in the wrong direction attempting to score a goal, some not running at all and just standing on the field whining and crying. Of course, again…..I had one of each. Madison loves to run and play soccer……as long as she’s not the center of attention and she’s not on the main field. The entire time of the game, she’s whining, chasing me, pulling at my leg and not participating in the actual game! Mason on the other hand is very cooperative with the coach and loves to run and kick the ball. Whenever the coach yells, “what time is it?” Mason yells “Game Time”. My biggest challenge with him and soccer, is keeping his nose from running and making sure he’s not running over his opponents. (He’s a little too aggressive and competitive for a three year old in my opinion.) He was happy because he got a lot of high fives, so he was on cloud nine.
After the game, we took a trip to the grocery store with my grandma……she always enjoys this. She had Madison in the shopping cart with her and I had Mason with me. Shopping is always easier if the twins are separated during the trip. While we were shopping, a little girl and her mom were in the meat section near us. Mason and I are singing and talking as we walk past. Of course, I notice immediately, that the little girl is staring. She walks from one side of our shopping cart to the other, just staring. I said, “Hi, how are you cutie?” …………………Nothing, no response. The little girl is maybe about 7 or 8 years old and obviously doesn’t realize that this is rude. She’s still staring so I turned to Mason and said to him, “Say hello Mason.” My friendly (happy he just played soccer) son says….. “Hi” and waves hello. ……still no response. Her mom notices that she’s not speaking and obviously doesn’t notice that she’s staring. Her mother asked her did she hear him say hello and told her to speak back……still nothing. Oh well…..we move on.
We go to McDonald’s for lunch. After the twins take a few bites of nuggets and head towards the tunnel in the play area, grandma and I finish our lunch. As always, I’m concerned about how other kids will react (This is always a concern of mine…….) There were a few other kids in there and no one seemed to pay any extra attention to Mason’s limb difference. One little boy (about 4 years old) asked if they wanted to play and off they went. How cute!? Well…..three rowdy kids (between 9 and 11 years old) came running in and started climbing and storming through the tunnels. One, who seemed to be the ring leader, made up a game where one of the little boys, the one who was initially playing with my M&M twins, would chase him around. The ring leader, would yell “stop chasing us, get away from us”, and this little guy would chase them and laugh. Pretty soon Mason & Madison were off happily playing with one another, while their little friend chased the rowdy kids. Works for them…..works for me…less worry! Then, I notice the little boy who originally asked Mason & Madison if they wanted to play, had to leave. Honestly, I think his dad was fed up with the rowdy kids and didn’t particularly like how his son was being made to chase them around. But, I could’ve been over thinking this. What I wasn’t over thinking was the fact that I heard the ring leader say….. “Look at his hand!” and he’s laughing and pointing and trying to show his friends. He asked Mason, “What happened to your hand?” Mason says….”its special” and then he says something else as if he’s trying to move past this conversation about his hand. The little boy keeps going with it….. “Look at his hand, ahahaha!” Mason puts his hand behind his back and continues talking to the kids, obviously still in good spirits and still wanting to play. He still wanted to play with them, go figure!!?? At this point, I’m ready to intervene, so I’m standing underneath the tunnel asking Mason to come here. “Come here buddy, can you come down for a minute please?” He wanted to be a big boy though, “Mommy, I don’t want to come down yet, I want to play.” He proudly says, “I’m talking to the boys.” I’m thinking well, at least if this ring leader kid see’s me standing here, he’ll leave my baby alone…… and if he doesn’t, I’ll handle it. He grabs Mason’s soccer jersey sleeve and tries to get him to move his arm from behind his back so he can show the other kids and possibly touch his hand. Ok, that’s enough!!!! (Mason gets annoyed sometimes when kids try to touch his hand) So, enough is enough! I started walking closer towards the tunnel. It took everything in me…..and then some, not to snap on this kid. The mom had no idea what was going on…..she was busy texting. Mason finally said, “Leave me alone” but he said it in a nice way…..as if he still wanted to be nice to this kid. Amazing! The kid finally left him alone, but then said….. “Ok, ok, I just have one question for you……are you the kid off of the movie Daddy’s daycare?” What the?????????? (Ok, I don’t use profanity, but if I did……!) …………My big boy, who has no clue what this kid is talking about, says “No……something something (unrecognizable words) …..Daycare.” and then makes his way towards the slide. I could’ve climbed into that tunnel and grabbed that kid by the collar pulling him out kicking and screaming, (since his mom was too busy with her blackberry to intervene)! But, instead I whispered, "Lord help me." I was so angry and so hurt and so proud of Mason all at the same time. It’s as if this incident didn’t bother him at all. He didn’t skip a beat. Is it because he didn’t understand he was being picked on? Is it because he was born with thick skin an innate ability to handle things like this? I’m trying to stand back and start letting him speak up for himself and be strong in situations like this…… but, he’s three years old for crying out loud! I wanted to just step in and handle that kid on behalf of my baby! It hurts me now, just writing about it. It angers me. I went to the tunnel because I wanted this bully to know I was there……but more importantly I wanted my baby Mason to know…..I’m here……… He wanted to be a big boy…..I know…..but Mommy is here. I wish I could always be there in every situation, all day, every day- just in case……..just in case, I need to step in and handle it.
Once they played a little more, we headed home…..as we’re leaving out the door, I hear another kid say….. “mommy, did you see that guy’s hand?” The mom says….. “who?”….then the kid must have been pointing, but we’re walking out of the door so we can’t see him…..then I hear the dad say…. “that’s ok.” I wonder if my baby heard this….. Man, Saturday was hard for me, but I wonder how hard it’s going to get for my baby Mason!