week the At-Home
Dad Network Message Board reached a milestone ... it's 1000th member.
Below is a post put up by a Wyoming at-home dad on that board just a few days
ago. I say we sign up the supermarket cashier mentioned in the post for
the convention keynote. It's nice to see the ladies sticking up for the
dads in public for a change.
Good change and
something that might offer a bit of positive in our struggle
against societal norms. I had a surprise moment of support
this very week at the grocery store we frequent. On Wednesday it is grocery day.
The three year old and I have been going since his first year and now the infant
travels along. We've gotten to know almost all of the cashiers. They know that I
am a home dad and have the babies every day.
Yesterday, the infant was in prime gurgle-coo mode and we were cooing back and
running the typical "no" argument game (we have made it into a weekly
ritual verbal game that the little boy loves- he holds up anything he can pick
up and says, "I need this" and I say no in a variety of ways) in the
check out line wait. Suddenly this older woman and her mother were in line
behind me and began a litany of comments about the situation, "Must be
dad's day off. Maybe he was laid off. Maybe he works in the oil field..."
and criticisms, "My kids would never ask for so much stuff. That baby
probably needs changed (for real this was said) Look at the snot on that kids
face." (there was snot on the infants face) I was doing my best to ignore
as I unloaded my cart and continued the "no" game. They were really
loud. I get this sort of thing often (it sounds like some of you guys do too) so
it really wasn't a big deal. Maybe a few years build tough skin.
Then, out of nowhere (I was still busy) the cashier
said in a loud voice, "Excuse me ladies." We all turned. Then she
commenced to tell them off. I wish I could remember everything she said, it was
quite powerful for me. But it was to the gist that I was an excellent father,
was a stay at home dad by choice, took excellent care of my kids, and had less
problems than most mothers she sees in this line. Then the cashier in the line
behind us agreed in a loud voice. I think I turned bright crimson and got a bit
watery in the eyes.
The ladies didn't say another word. I thanked the cashier,
still feeling hyper-humbled. She winked and told me it had to be said. I guess
what we do doesn't always go unnoticed. It is also nice when it is acknowledged.
And, I have to say, I haven't felt this puffed up about the choice to stay
vid at top is just eye candy enjoy...)