My twin girls are four. By now, the “You’ve got your hands full!” comments are old hat. The “Better you than me!” comments are still inappropriate, but they don’t cause my blood pressure to rise the way they once did. My canned answer to “Double trouble!” is, “Double blessings!” and I roll right along.
I think that people are generally nice. They want to make conversation. But they don’t always know what to say. And when they do say something, they don’t always listen to what comes out of their mouths.
Once upon a time, when the girls were much smaller, my focus was more on getting through a store during “awake time”, when my girls were content to look around in their stroller. The biggest challenge about comments from random people was that they potentially slowed me down, threatening to get me off schedule.
These days, though, the challenges are greater. No, I don’t want to be in the grocery store any longer than I have to with two curious four-year olds…but I also want to be careful with my girls’ tender hearts. I may overthink it, but I fear too many, “You’ve got your hands full!” comments might make the girls question one day if they’re a burden.
That in mind, I had The Worst Experience last week when I was at the grocery store with Baby B, a rare one-on-one “date” for the two of us. We were waiting (a long time) in the checkout line. We started chatting with the nice grandmother behind us. She was super sweet, and she engaged B right away. I love for the girls to practice their conversation skills…and it helped keep her little hands away from the ginormous candy display.
Everything was going great until the lady asked if B had any brothers or sisters. When she learned that Twin Sister was at home, she said to B, “I’ll bet you’re the pretty one, right?”
My heart sank.
I piped in immediately. “No, both my girls are beautiful, inside and out! And they are super smart, too. And they are so kind and loving towards each other. We’re very blessed.”
There again, I know the lady didn’t mean any harm. I know she was just trying to engage with B, and I’m certain she didn’t THINK before she said that
My responses these days can no longer be geared just towards getting on my way as quickly as possible. My girls are watching. They are listening.
I’m trying to model grace. And I’m trying to protect my girls’ precious tender hearts. I can’t expect the random lady at the grocery store to have that in mind when she makes idle chit-chat. In reality, I know the onus is on me.
How do you handle comments from strangers? What’s the “worst” thing you’ve ever heard?
Keep up with Mandy and her adorable girls at Twin Trials and Triumphs!