This morning started out like it usually does, everyone running late. Now that we've moved, Angel's school is a solid 25 minute drive in the AM. Well, this morning, we were running behind. I didn't have time to make breakfast, so I grabbed some Clif bars and shot out the door. We made it in pretty good time so I decided to stop at the Starbucks and get the boys a breakfast sandwich instead of just eating a Clif bar for breakfast.
I saw the usual crew, said my hellos, ordered and waited for my sandwiches to be heated up and my latte to be made. Just when I was about to get my coffee and sandwiches, a woman comes into the shop and starts screaming, or should I say, demanding to know who's van is parked outside. I looked at her, she was one of the homeless people that hangs out around this particular Starbucks, and realized she was talking about my van.
I had parked right in front. Right in the sweet spot. Front row, closest to the door, totally visible from inside the shop. I say this next thing with a bit of hesitation, for fear of being judged. But, I know that I need to say it. I left all 3 of the boys in the van. The store wasn't crowded, I could see them, and I was in a hurry. Now, some of you might be thinking that I should not have done that and that CPS should be called on me. And you have the right to think that. But I really was paying attention.
Well, after listening to her psychotic rants and claims of an 8 month old baby in the van screaming and in duress, I said to her that it was my van and I'm RIGHT HERE. I SEE THEM. THEY AREN'T SCREAMING, HE"S NOT 8 MOS. OLD. She proceeds to scream obscenities at me for leaving them in the car, that she was going to call the police and that I should "Fucking go to work and forget about my goddamn coffee!" "Fucking take care of your kids! First of all, she knows nothing about me or how I "take care of my kids". I was infuriated as well as being scared shitless!
All the while getting closer to me and waving her arms like she was about to attack me. I have never been so scared and pissed off at the same time. Ever. I was shaking. I didn't know if she was going to come after me, or go after the boys. Well, after what seemed like an eternity of her screaming at me, she walked outside. It looked as if she were going to go to the van so I followed her. She saw I was coming and figured it was a good time to start verbally accosting me again.
At this point, Cat, the brave Starbucks worker came out and got in between me and the crazy homeless woman. She did this because at this point, it really looked like she was going to attack me. A few other workers came out then she finally left.
I was so upset and scared. I had started to cry and ended up in the car, sans food and coffee. A nice patron of the shop (she told me her name was Tanya) came up to the window and checked on me to see if I was OK and was so nice and reassuring that nothing was my fault and let me know that the homeless lady was a little "off". She offered to get my food and drink for me, but by this time, another Starbucks employee had come to my car to check on me. They gave me a hug, told me I was a good mom (thanks Nick!) and apologized for my horrible experience. I got my food and was on my way, after calming down and stopping myself from hyperventilating.
The staff at the Starbucks was awesome and the one patron was super nice. But no one else said anything or got involved. I guess that's what's to be expected. So now, I feel shaky and weird and ashamed for letting a crazy woman make me feel bad about my parenting choices. I am a good mom and I do what is absolutely the best for my children. I should not feel guilty, but unfortunately, I do.
I have no lesson or funny quip about this particular occurrence. I just had to get it out on "paper".