Monday, November 11, 2013

High Road Vs. Low Road: What's the Diff? It's Just a Road

Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles @
Some of my most memorable parenting moments happen when I’m simultaneously horrified and proud of something that a peep said, did or didn’t do. Here's one of those moments:

On a recent trip to the grocery store, I had the peeps in tow. Normally, I have the luxury of shopping alone, but this day I had no choice. I was dreading the stop because I had a humongo grocery list. Here’s the equation:  

Humongo Shopping List + two 6-year-old peeps = THAT mom.
(Someone please tell me you know what I’m talking about. Lie if you have to.)

 On the drive to the store, I gave myself a mental pep talk that went something like this: “Suck it up. You are spoiled. People shop with their kids every day and handle it just fine. So can you. Let’s do this. You will not die. No one has ever died from taking their kids to the grocery store.”  

As we strolled (aka speed walked) through the aisles, things were going surprisingly well. We had our groove on, everyone was making a conscious decision to be pleasant, and I think we might have even cracked some jokes. (Those free cookies in the bakery are a godsend!)

We made it all the way to the milk aisle. I glanced away for a millisecond to peruse my choices. A millisecond was all it took.

Ruthie: “Audrey just hit me for no reason” (Man! They are SO fast! How do they do that?)

Me: Audrey, did you hit your sister?

Audrey: Yes.

Me: Why? (Why do I even ask that question? What answer do I expect to get? )

Audrey: I don’t know. (DUH)

I praised Ruthie for taking the high road and not slugging her sister back. When I asked if they knew what “taking the high road” meant, they both said yes and proceeded to tell me. This seemed like the perfect opportunity to launch into my “high road vs. low road” speech. You know the one. It’s the lecture that imparts the life lesson about always striving for the high road, despite what comes our way.

Satisfied with myself, we continued shopping. And then I heard …

“I took the low road and I don’t care because it’s just a road.”

 See? Horrified with a touch of pride. Because the kid's gotta point.

 I can't be the only parent who gets this odd feeling of accomplishment from time to time. Please share yours.

Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing … Keep It Real.


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