So yesterday I was at Rock'n Babies, a children's clothing resale shop, looking for some summer clothes for BB. The store has a little play area where BB had been sitting watching two slightly older kids, a boy and a girl, fight over toys. The little girl's dad was refereeing while his wife shopped. When I was ready to pay for my little pair of denim cargo shorts, I rounded up BB and he stood near me while I waited in line at the register, which is right by the front door of the small shop. The little girl and her dad were standing next to us, directly between me and the door.
I told BB, "I just have to pay for these and then we can go," and BB said "Home," and ran right out the front door.
"BB! NO! NO!" I shouted as he took a couple steps onto the sidewalk between the door and the parking lot. And suddenly the Mommy-instincts kicked in in full force - all I could see was my small son two steps away from the parking lot, and the little girl's dad was fumbling, not sure which direction to move out of my path to the door. I just didn't have time to do that polite dance, especially since BB's brother's bump makes me much less quick on my feet, and the mommy-instincts took over - I put my hand on the man's shoulder and firmly pushed him out of my way, separating him from his daughter, and ran through the new space between them. The force of my shove surprised even me. I raced out the door and grabbed BB before he made it any further towards the parking lot.
When I came back in the store I rambled an apology, trying to explain.
"I'm sorry, it's just that he was heading towards the parking lot - I wasn't trying to push you but I needed to get to him, I'm sorry," and the dad just looked taken aback and kind of mumbled an "It's okay." I think he was really surprised by how I (literally) man-handled him - and I can't really blame him, I surprised myself too. I paid for the shorts and left the store, and as I got in the car I realized that my actions had been totally instinctual, not at all thought-out or planned. It's amazing what those Mommy-instincts can make us Mamas capable of in an urgent moment - for me it was super-human strength even in a compromised physical state, and a total disregard for social etiquette. The Mommy-instincts pushed and shoved me into action. And if me and the little girl's dad had to get a little pushed around to spare BB some roughing up, well, I wouldn't change a thing.