About a month ago I took the kids to the zoo. Banana and Big D had free lunch coupons for their birthdays so we decided to go the the restaurant there, which we never do. I quickly remembered why we never do it as I waited in a long line to order. There were no tables available. We had to watch for one to open up and then I sent the kids over to sit there while I continued waiting in line. The G-man decided he was starving while we waited, so I ended up nursing him in line - while standing up and pushing a stroller. He was still nursing as I ordered and even when the food appeared. I wondered how I was going to manage getting the food and drinks, the baby, and the stroller over to the table? The stroller actually came in handy with its cup holders. The Banana was my hero when she came over and asked if I needed help. Did I ever! By this time I was sweating. We made it over to the table only to find out that we needed a bigger table for all of us and our lunches. We had to move in order to find two empty tables to push together. Finally, we sat down together to eat. I was still sweating when we were cleaning up, and was completely taken aback by the woman who stopped me and said, "Whatever you are doing with those kids is amazing. They are the most well-behaved children I have ever seen." I went back to the table and shared that lovely thought with the kids, all the while tears were streaming down my face.
Another instance of my pessimism being blown out of the water occurred when I had something I needed to bring to Miss M at her school. I was lamenting the fact that I had to bring five children into the school office with me just to drop off a tote bag. I was sure we would cause a ruckus and maybe even distract a classroom or two while school was in session. So imagine my surprise when the school secretary met us with a huge smile and joked with the kids a bit before we even got the chance to tell her why we were there! When Miss M got home that evening she told me that the secretary told her she had a beautiful family. She said they were quiet and well-behaved; better than some of the two-kid families that have been in the school. My glass was half full. Fuller even.
Maybe these events will help me to reverse my thinking when I take the kids places. I really should bring them along proudly, knowing that they are more likely to brighten a person's day than they are to ruin it. I mean, honestly...how could this face not brighten your day?