Okay, how many people caught the article on MSNBC about the mother leaving her 2-year-old in the car?
Unfortunately, I did. I read the whole thing from top to bottom. And then I felt compelled to make a phone call to my lawyer.
No, not really. I don’t even have a lawyer. But maybe I ought to think about getting one…just in case. Was this woman at the mall going on a shopping spree? Was she away from the car for an hour while she got some acrylic nails put on? Did she take even 10 minutes to run into a grocery store for milk and beer (the essentials)? No. This woman, on a cold and rainy winter’s day, left her sleeping little girl in a locked and alarm-activated car in the loading zone of a Walmart…while she took her other daughters not 10 YARDS AWAY to a Salvation Army bell-ringing lady so that they could put their money in the bucket. I’m sure the whole ordeal went down in a matter of 2 minutes or less. When she walked back to the car (which was always in her sights; I’m sure she could’ve spit on it) some security ape blocked her way and arrested the hell out of her.
ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?
Okay, granted, it’s never, never a good idea to leave your kid in the car…fine. Whatever. I get that. But this seems a little like overkill to me. I’ve buckled Mia in her carseat and left her for a split second to return those horrible metal buggies to the designated cart corral, straight across from where I parked–could something not have happened then (besides me being driven away in handcuffs)? What about the times I leave Mia sleeping soundly in a heated, running car in the driveway while I bring the groceries into the house? I’ve left both of the girls in the (locked) car while I walked 5 feet away to the pick-up door at Sears once. And though I’ve tried to block this memory from my mind completely, once I accidentally locked Cheyenne in the car. Firetrucks came. It was awful. Am I next to go? Could this entry be in anyway incriminating?
But then again, I’ve also contemplated calling the police while I sat with a 4-year-old little boy and his tiny infant sister in a parking lot for over 15 minutes until his ghetto-fabulous mother came out of the bank and returned to her car. I’ve put a little girl to bed at midnight when her mother was too drunk to realize she even had a child. I walked a first-grader from a mile-away gas station back home to her empty apartment. I’ve made more than one anonymous phone calls to Social Services.
I actually thought ranting might relieve some anger–and it did, a little…but now I’m just confused. What’s acceptable and what’s not? Because sometimes the answer is not so obvious. Crap. I feel like such a bad parent.