Apology Rejected

I needed coffee and therefore I stopped by Starbucks with Little Bear in tow.
Read: Mommy is carrying Little Bear in the baby carrier.
Of course, it’s Saturday around 12:20 so it’s packed. Apparently, everyone needed coffee. Ahh, but I was smart. I used my App to order and purchase the coffee to 1) reduce wait time 2)hopefully keep Little Bear from losing her cool… the stars did not align this day.
Apparently, the online ordering system had run out of paper and was refusing to spit out orders (which I found out later). After waiting for 20 minutes, benefit of the doubt, I made my way to the counter to inquire about my missing macchiato. This meant I needed to finagle my way through the crowd of people with the baby seat that is no wider than I am yet quite cumbersome to move easily. I made it without incident and only saying “excuse me” a few times. No biggie. I asked about my order, was given the reason for the prolonged wait time and reordered. Then, it was back to the ‘pick up’ area to wait for the caramel goodness that was to be mine. Now, we’re all waiting. It’s a small space. If they moved those blasted shelves from the middle of the store, there would be ample space for movement, but that was not the case. I saw an open spot in the corner of the store that was unoccupied and shielded from the mass of people so Little Bear and I could wait out of the way. I was following a younger woman down the mini-aisle when she abruptly stopped in the middle, stranding me holding Little Bear’s carrier like a snowplow smack-dab in the center of the store. Everyone stopped. No one was bumped, touched or otherwise bothered, yet I still said.
Excuse me. I’m just going to scoot behind you. I’m sorry.
There it was. The apology. I’m quite sure I muttered that apology 4-6 times minimum during the 30 minutes we were in Starbucks. It was expected that I apologize for moving around people I suppose but was it necessary? Wouldn’t an excuse me have sufficed?
I am convinced that Mothers apologize more often than any other demographic of people. Some apologies are worthy: they apologize for being late or forgetting something. Other apologies are simply habit: they apologize for their 2-year-old making noise, or their 3-year-old not wanting to share or for their kids making a mess of the toys. Do these last few things really need an apology? Small children are exploring their surroundings and therefore do not need to remain quiet all of the time. Try keeping an infant quiet, let me know how that goes. Kids like their toys and have a sense of ownership over them, they don’t always want to share. I would hedge a bet that there are times you don’t feel like sharing but you don’t apologize, you simply don’t share whatever it is, and no one questions you. I’m getting to the point that I’d like to see Bubba work it out with other children if he has something they want or the other way around. He’s got to learn at some point.  Children enjoy playing and imagining and therefore, they make messes. I’d much rather have my child happy and engaged with imaginative play with all of the blocks and cars strewn about the family room than have him sitting quietly staring at me, or the TV. I also find myself apologizing for the state of my house. Yes. I’m sure it’s a mess, especially if you come over unannounced. I have to say that when you’re constantly on the clock with two kiddos, writing a blog and building an empire, the house is going to get a little messy. I’m working on the balance, but sometimes you can’t do it all and for once, I’m not sorry. It actually feels good to let that go a little. Doesn’t mean I will stop caring, but I will stop carrying the weight of guilt about it.
Today, I give you permission, not that you need it, to go about your day as you deem fit without the need to explain or apologize to anyone. Unless you’re going to rob a bank or something illegal. Don’t do that.
Otherwise,

Be Great,

M

13 thoughts on “Apology Rejected

  1. I love this anecdote! Mothers deserve the most respect in the world for dedicating themselves to raising our future, and things like this remind me that there is so much more to do to honor them. What a beautiful message!

  2. It’s so true that many things don’t require an apology. I usually apologize as a means of politeness or acknowledgement. I also see other Mom’s do it when their kids start to make loud noises, as a sign to those nearby that the “infringement” their “public space” is nothing personal – just life. Most people go along with it.

  3. I was thinking about this last night. I needed something done and I kept apologizing to the person I needed doing it because I felt bad putting him out but it was his job and I shouldn’t have apologized for it. I find I apologize to everyone, for everything, all the time.

  4. Are you Canadian by any chance? 😉 Because we Canadians are known for apologizing for everything! In most cases, though, it’s just to be polite not because we feel like we did something “wrong”. Hope you enjoyed your macchiato! 🙂

  5. Oh my goodness. I find myself saying “sorry” too. I have one friends who does it so much we all make fun of him. We are always saying , “You didn’t do anything wrong, stop saying that!”. Loved your story though 🙂 And glad you got your coffee!

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