When you're a hetero couple but don't have kids, people assume a couple of things about you. One, you're not married. Two, you're not ready yet. Or, three, you're not having kids at all because you're selfish and hate all children. Since Bill and I began dating in our mid-twenties and didn't marry until our late twenties, we got lumped into group three when we didn't start poppin' out those shorties right away.
Although Bill and I never have hated children, I do distinctly remember feeling very annoyed when inconsiderate people brought their even more inconsiderate children into restaurants that we frequented. It made me cringe when I saw them walk through the door. And, the more baby-distracting gear that they carried the more likely that their kid was going to be a major problem to my excellent dining experience. So, now that we've popped one out, we've become more like that couple. But, we've also tried to be sensitive to others. We eat at weird times on non-popular days. We try to find "kid friendly" even among the independent restaurants that still suit our sensibilities. Or, and this is just the best option most times, gotten a babysitter.
Still, I always thought that the inconsiderate parent problem was not mine because Willa never exhibited anything but a natural talent for being well-behaved and charming in public. But our recent trip to our local fave, South City Diner, demonstrates a contrary experience that is increasingly becoming the norm around our house lately. We walked to City Diner, that was fine. We arrived at City Diner, that was also fine. We entered City Diner and that was when something happened. It was like a dog whistle in that, whatever it was that upset the balance, neither Bill nor I saw or heard it coming. Well, it finally ended but not before feeling extremely uncomfortable, embarrassed, humiliated, and, believe it or not, a lot like one of them! Ugh. And double Ugh.