Mr. Mom

This week is the week that I call Hell Week for Hot Mama.  She has parent teacher conferences two of the nights have to deal with parents who make up stupid excuses as to why their child is not doing well in school.   This leaves me with the Kid all day and means I also have to go out and go grocery shopping.  Which I would bet I looked like the typical dad who has no clue.

I head out early in the morning mainly to ovoid the afternoon and evening hell hole that Wal-Mart transforms into but before we do that we head into soccer mom central, Target.  I stop by the baby section to pick up some diapers just to have on hand at home and then some wipes, and baby food.  I start to walk to through the rest of the store just perusing and I start to realize that I am the only male in this store!  Not only am I the only male in this store but every women has either a baby in the cart or a shadow.   I knew that I was getting stares which either meant one of two things were going through these mom’s head, “what is that dad doing shouldn’t he be working he probably has no idea what he is doing?” or “aww that’s so sweet a dad who actually takes care of their child.” I’m guessing the first was going through their heads, however that is a post for a later date.  I felt incredibly uncomfortable with all the stares.  So instead of letting the stigma of stay at home dads hit the soccer moms on the head, I let them get the best of me and get my things and head out of there.

Next stop, Hell Mart.   I hate shopping here but when you are on a budget this is place.  I get the Kid out of the car and he is wet.  So I schlep through the store to the family restroom, it is clean and private, so there is not some creepy guy checking my 16 month old out as I change him.   Back in the restroom I get him changed and into an un-matching pair of pants, which I am sure that people will look at me even more that I can not get my son into matching clothes.

We start the grocery shopping off in the back of the store getting milk, my life blood coffee, then head to the cereal aisle which I had the great debate of oatmeal; generic or name brand, there was a dollar difference, I chose generic and my guess is I will taste that dollar difference.  Hitting up the meat section then the frozen food isle for chicken nuggets for the Kid (which thanks Tyson for making your nuggets sound somewhat healthy by saying the worst part of your nuggets, the breading, is a good source of calcium right there on the bag) a frozen sodium filled pizza for me.  The it is off to the deli, I do not know why I decided at this point in time to look at the kids feet but I realized he was trying to get one of his shoes off, look at the other foot and there is no shoe!

I end up retracing my steps, back to the meat area and nothing.  Back to the cereal, nothing.  At this point I realize that Not So Smart Mart has a good 4 inch gap between the floor and the bottom of the shelves in which this little precious shoe could have gone, but I have pride and I am not about to crawl on the floor of Wal-Mart, that is reserved for the guys and girls who visit that place overnight, not at 10:30am!  Walk back to the coffee section and still nothing.  Milk, where at first I did not see anything.  Then a man walking out the back open the doors and a light came out, like when I first saw Hot Mama walk out of her car at Jimmy Johns, and angels from heaven began to sing,


He saw me looking around and saw the Kid who was just laughing away.  He asked

Did you happen to lose a shoe

Yes I did!  Do you know where it is at?

Yes I put it up by jewelry.

Oh thank you! I thought that it was lost forever.

HAHA I once had kids and I know those things are the hardest to keep on and I knew some MOM would eventually be missing them!

I am sorry sir do I look like a mom to you? No, let us set the record straight there are dads who stay home so why couldn’t you have said parent?  I digress, that is a post for another day.

I wait to pick up the shoe until I leave and head back up to the deli.  I get what I need and while the deli lady is cutting my meat, she asks

Is that the baby who is missing a shoe?

Yes he is, I am waiting until I get ready to leave to pick it up at jewelry.

Oh good that is all we’ve been able to talk about hoping that the MOM can find that shoe or realizes it is missing.

Good GOD! Does the whole store know that my son is missing his shoe? Was there a radio broadcast saying,

Stop everything a MOM’s child is missing a shoe, we must find her and return the shoe!

At that point in time I was so frustrated with the use of the word MOM that I get my meat, get the produce we need and head to get the damn shoe and check out.   I am just glad that there was no one in jewelry when I went to pick it up.  I let the kind lady at the check out know that I picked it up if someone from jewelry asks.

I left Wal-mart with no dignity and feeling very VERY emasculated!

About The Rookie Dad

I am husband and father foremost. Secondly, I am a PBS producer and contribute to Traveling Dads and Dads Round Table.

Posted on February 16, 2012, in Fatherhood and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. I’m with you on this grocery trip, I have also gone through the aisles three and four times looking for a lost shoe or lost toy that my kid just couldn’t live without despite dropping it into oblivion, often some stock person will find me with an armful of playthings my kids have scattered throughout the store… I do have a great knack for ignoring annoying comments about being a SAHD, a blessing

    • It isn’t necessarily the comments on being a SAHD. I believe that stigma is slowly working its way out. It was just the MOM comments that bothered me. Why does it always have to a mom who is shopping at the grocery store on a Wednesday morning?

  2. Think of it this way…they could only assume a mom would lose a shoe. Men never lose shoes!
    My daughter took off her brand new shoe in Vons one day and I discovered it right before I got in the checkout line. I ended up searching the store, assuming she put it on a shelf. I came up empty handed, but someone took it up to the register. She had worn the shoes three times at that point. I was very thankful for whomever brought it up! (and they were expensive)

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