Sunday, October 19, 2008

License to Procreate

I try not to judge. I really really do. But right now, in the comfort of my own blogosphere, I am totally judging. I'm climbing onto my soap box and shouting from the roof tops. Hold onto your hats boys and girls for the story I am about to tell you is TRUE. I couldn't make it up if I tried.

Who knew a quick trip to Walgreens on a Sunday morning would be enough to awaken within me a violent beast-like urge to harm another individual? All I wanted to do was go in for coffeemate and oj and get back to my fresh-brewed pot of heaven when I noticed an alarmingly overweight mom and her 3 overweight (on the way to alarming) children walking in ahead of me. No judging, no judging, no judging... I repeated this mantra a gazillion times over in my head. Maybe they're here for healthy treats? Fun toys for active play perhaps? I let thoughts like these bounce around my noggin for the few minutes it took me to locate my items.

I could hear them in the next aisle over- the candy aisle - and the mom saying 'get what you want and let's go!' I jumped at the inflection of that last word. When I got to the check-out line they were ahead of me, the mom putting her basket of items on the counter. As the cashier scanned the items, I took mental notes: 1 package of Reese's Peanut Butter Cups - check, 1 jumbo Butterfinger - check, 1 box of Junior Mints - check, 2 packages of Chili Cheetos - check, check, 3 bottles of Coca-Cola Classic, 1 Mountain Dew and a big bag of Doritos. Breakfast of champions. My last-ditch at hoping that the items were indeed for someone else - anyone else - came to a crashing halt when the mother of the year declined the offer of a bag and each of her children grabbed their loot. Did I mention that the youngest one was a girl of about THREE!?!? She was easily 50 lbs. - insert judging here.

A million statistics flooded through my head like a tidal wave. In my head I was jumping on the child abuser's back and with all my awesome strength I was sending her crashing to the ground, Doritos and Mountain Dew sent flying. I was holding her down and SCREAMING in her face DO YOU KNOW THAT YOU ARE KILLING YOUR CHILDREN!?!? By the time I purchased my own goods and made my way out to my car, I saw them - the poster family for why people should not be allowed to have children - piling into their van. I sat in my car and waited to see what would happen next. I wanted her to look up. I wanted her to see the blatant judging in my eyes that were shooting mental darts her way. I wanted her to see my alarm and my hate. I wanted her to know that I thought she was a terrible person.

The child in the front at least wore a seat belt. But the 3-year old in the back did not. The lack of car seat for said 3 year old was too much to dwell on. Before backing out and continuing on her merry way, the world's worst mother cranked her music, lit her cigarette, and cracked her window. An inch.


Justin said...

That's why I don't bother trying to give people a chance. Most times they are exactly what your gut instinct leads you to believe. And there's no use trying to tip-toe or play nice in situations like this, and is why I am the one going "Jesus..." in line behind them. Or scoffing loudly. And then berating her to the cashier.

I do feel bad for children that have no guidance in not only living a healthy lifestyle, but also that of a normal one. No role models.

But I also don't feel bad for them when those children grow up and choose to repeat the patterns that they were raised with. A cycle always can be broken, and while it's hard, it can be done.

I don't feel sorry for any person who isn't willing to life a finger (or put down a butterfinger) to save his or her life.

And that's why I'm more evil than you.

EricSchoville said...

Personally, I think we should all be fat and happy. :)

Schovillova said...

JT - again, that's why we're friends.

Eric - sigh.

Eric said...

When Julie and I moved back to Indiana, the alarming number of obese children was staggering. At first we lived way out on the East Side, between Cumberland and Greenfield. It's near epidemic. The saddest moment was when we went to the movie theater and saw a father and his 9- or 10-year old son, both with giant tubs of popcorn, a trough of soda and several boxes of candy. That's right...each. I actually felt a great deal of compassion for them because it occurred to me that neither of them had been taught that there were other choices. This pattern could potentially continue for generations.

I heard a report on NPR about a year ago. A reporter and photographer who had ventured to the Gulf Coast in the 60's and 70's to document starving, malnourished children at the time returned. With images of rail-thin waifs with distended abdomens still in his head, what he encountered were legions of obese, some morbidly so, toddlers and teens. The truly sad thing - they were still malnourished.

Schovillova said...

Thanks for that comment Eric. And I wish that I had the instant compassion that you possess but I'm afraid my first reaction is anger. Perhaps I need to reign it in. And I do consider socioecomomics and education, especially here in Indy, but I just feel like I need to be angry at someone.