Dear Grumpy Person

Dear Grumpy Person,

I’ve seen you passing me by on the streets as I go out for daily walks with my toddler. You look so frowny and like you have the weight of the world of the shoulders. The weather is just utter crap isn’t it? I think the sun has shone for about 3 days in total since around October. I feel grumpy too.

I know you’re in a rush and stand there huffing and puffing in front of us in queues in the shops whilst I look like I’m wrestling my 2 year old on my hands and knees and trying to stop him from running away for toddler freedom. We usually try to get out of your way quickly.

I know life is tough at the moment for many. Jobs are scarce, things are expensive and the gap between the two looks like it’s getting bigger.

I know most people spend 99% of their time juggling their million plates running to work, running from work, picking up kids, feeding kids, bathing kids, putting kids to bed. By the end of most days I collapse on the couch and watching TV and falling into bed, ready to do it all again the next day.

I know most people spend their “Me” time doing meal plans, working out the ins and outs of their mortgage, wondering whether they can afford a holiday and then spending hours trying to find the best deals.

BUT ….you should know….

There is one thing you must never forget to do. (providing you are sane, not dodgy, not horrible)….

When you see a happy toddler out with his mum, on a walk and that toddler smiles at you or says hello or waves bye bye as he passes, you must absolutely, positively 100% automatically lift your hand up, smile the biggest smile, wave back and very happily, at the top of your lungs say “HELLO!!!! / BYEEEE” as you pass him by.

Because your life is not SO bad that you cannot be kind to a small child.

Don’t be a miserable git.

Yours faithfully,

A Mum out with her toddler

Grumpy

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41 Comments

  1. Nikki Thomas April 19, 2013 / 5:38 am

    Do you know I was only thinking the other day how miserably everyone looks when I am out and about lately. I think there is a general feeling of grumpiness in the air as it is rare to see anyone smile. But too right if you see a toddler it would be nice to make an effort wouldn’t it?

  2. farfromhomemama April 19, 2013 / 5:44 am

    Yes, yes and YES! I’ve encountered this a lot recently and just want to scream ‘smile at my child, it will cost you nothing’. I mean, who can resist the smile and enthusiasm of a child? It’s just wrong.

  3. Kylie April 19, 2013 / 6:02 am

    Haha! I love this!!! I hate grumpy people that don’t acknowledge kids being cute or silly! I don’t think I’ve ever ignored a child who has said hello to me!

  4. Sarah MumofThree World April 19, 2013 / 6:04 am

    Very true! I would most definitely say ‘hello’. There’s nothing like a toddler saying hello or waving to put a smile on your face.

  5. Angela April 19, 2013 / 6:13 am

    Totally Agree! I have begun to mention it out loudly whenever i notice some one not waving back at my little ones “Oh! Dear They must be very busy darling as they surely don’t have enough spare time to raise a smile or their hand” My boys often reply “Thats sad!”
    I mean i can be grumpy be no matter how im feeling i always remember my p’s &q’s and to smile at children x

  6. Elaine Livingstone April 19, 2013 / 7:39 am

    how can people not? there is nothing more endearing than a toddler that beams you the biggest smile that lights right up to his eyes and shouts hiya, hiya, hiya until you answer them back. I think it is such a gorgeous stage. Is it just people are so scared to talk to toddlers/children these days in case you look at them suspiciously and wonder if they are going to kidnap said child? Such a sad world in a lot of respects.

  7. Kelloggsville April 19, 2013 / 8:44 am

    I always smile at the littlies, wave at them on the bus, train,etc but what bothers me is the number of times that child looks at me like I’m an idiot. No smile back, no waves just a grumpy look. What are their parents teaching them these days, don’t they know old people like to be waved back at by toddlers. Sheeeeesh.

  8. Nichola Fabfortymum April 19, 2013 / 8:34 am

    Oh I do so agree, how can anyone not acknowledge a wee smiley happy innocent child. Although in the supermarket recently there was a little girl waving and saying hello to everyone from the trolley, an elderly man stopped and smiled and said hello young lady. The mother turned around and glared at him as though he was some kind of deviant. The old gent actually looked mortified and he just scuttled off, I thought that was a sad situation too x

  9. Apple Leiper April 19, 2013 / 8:41 am

    People are just weird! I talk to everyone.
    Some old guy actually growled at my 6 year old yesterday for having the nerve to look at the posters in the £ shop! My jaw fell wide open. If you want kids to have good manners, u have to have them too!

  10. Ramblings Of A Suburban Mummy April 19, 2013 / 1:46 pm

    I can’t understand why these grumpy people can’t smile at babies and toddlers. My children have both always wanted interaction with random people and have always been upset when people are grumpy! I agree put a smile on your face and cheer up! 🙂

  11. Brinabird and Son April 19, 2013 / 1:59 pm

    So true. They really do brighten up our days. The same things just don’t bother them. We think we are teaching them when really we learn a lot from them. So much easier to smile!

  12. Kara April 19, 2013 / 3:03 pm

    I totally agree and actually had the opposite experience at the hospital today. Lots of grumpy people who spotted my toddler bounding towards them with the biggest smile on her face – they all smiled and said hello and she was in so much shock she ran straight to me and clung to my legs for dear life!! lol

  13. Suzanne April 19, 2013 / 3:38 pm

    Well said! There are so many grumpy people about, it only everyone would smile at those passing by, I think it would make the world a much nicer place 🙂

  14. Jess April 19, 2013 / 4:13 pm

    I loved this! I hope I never become to grumpy to seop and wav to a passing toddler 🙂 #pocolo

  15. Faded Seaside Mama April 19, 2013 / 6:09 pm

    I so agree with you! Manners cost nothing but mean everything. And we should all be setting good examples to the children we meet. I hope I never become that grumpy person!

  16. Mummy of Two April 19, 2013 / 6:31 pm

    Ha ha love it! Have you been passing me in the street?!! It can’t have been me actually because I agree you can’t ignore a happy toddler no matter how grumpy you are! Fab post x

  17. Claire toplis April 19, 2013 / 6:46 pm

    Smiling you can’t beat it bah to grumpy people

  18. MummyKindness April 19, 2013 / 8:41 pm

    So very true!! I like the way you show so much understanding and consideration for what makes people grumpy. I try to do this myself (and don’t always succeed!) I think I’m quite good at putting a brave face on when I’m grumpy. Not everyone bothers to hide it!I can’t understand how anyone’s spirit could fail to be lifted by a toddler’s wave, though.

    Glad to have found you via #PoCoLo

  19. Laura Huggins April 19, 2013 / 9:53 pm

    Oh how I have wanted to say this to so many people. My son will always wave and say hi to people walking past and the sadness in his eyes when they dont do it back. I used to say that they didnt see him wave, but now I just say quite loudly, that person is not very happy today I am sure we will find some happier people soon.

    x x x

  20. Misty April 19, 2013 / 8:58 pm

    I’ve had this a lot too! Everyone really is miserable. Roll on the sunshine so every can be smiley again. I miss smiles!

  21. Susan Mann April 19, 2013 / 9:56 pm

    ha ha I love it and have to agree x

  22. Jayne April 20, 2013 / 10:10 am

    This is so spot on! I’ve got really cross before when Sausage has mustered up her best smile for someone and they’ve ignored her, I can’t stand ignorance, especially when its directed at my child.

  23. Redpeffer April 20, 2013 / 1:38 pm

    You are absolutely spot on with this! It’s not just at the moment though that people are grumpy in the face of smiling, waving toddlers. We experienced it occasionally when my eldest was a toddler a few years ago now. How can you possibly resist a smiling toddler? Their joy and innocence should always brighten even the darkest moment surely, irrespective of one’s own situation. After all, it’s not their fault that things might be a little crap.

  24. Verily Victoria Vocalises April 20, 2013 / 2:47 pm

    Absolutely and utterly too true – I am so with you on this. If everyone could make the effort to be lovely to the kids just think how they could turn out! Thank you so much for linking this post up to #PoCoLo lovely 🙂 xx

  25. welcome to the mummy madness April 20, 2013 / 8:36 pm

    imagine they had botox help im trying to smile lol! i think thats it (oh dear by this comment im sounding very overtired!)! my son would persist till they saw him it was always very embarrassing!

  26. Lous Lake Views April 20, 2013 / 8:47 pm

    You are so right and I bet the grumpy person would feel better too by smiling at a cute toddler, linking up via #PoCoLo

  27. Erica Price April 21, 2013 / 8:48 am

    A smile and a wave or an hello costs nothing and I think it would brighten my day to give it.

  28. Charlie Hughes (The Mad Mummy Musings) April 21, 2013 / 12:25 pm

    It’s so sad when people feel the weight of the world on their shoulders, are so absorbed in their grumpiness, that they can’t see the beauty and joy a toddler can bring. Smiles are contagious and can truly make another’s day. As previously mentioned, you almost have to feel sorry for someone who just can’t muster a wave, smile or “hello” to a small person. Maybe kids aren’t their thing. Shame. Nothing like a toddler to bring sunshine into your heart xx #PoCoLo

  29. Red Rose Mummy April 21, 2013 / 11:01 pm

    This is very true also, when you see a toddler having a meltdown in the supermarket it’s so helpful to tut and roll your eyes I find. That really helps their mummy who is probably on the verge of tears and can’t carry said screaming toddler because she already has his baby sister to push in the pram. A little sympathy really wouldn’t hurt. He’s three, he’s not out to annoy you. Can you tell I’ve had a stressful day?

  30. Mummy Barrow April 22, 2013 / 12:24 pm

    Really have to wonder what is going on when somebody is constantly grumpy like that. Very sad really.

    THis isnt a dress rehearsal.

  31. Mrs Teapot April 22, 2013 / 8:06 pm

    I think we must frequent the same places!
    It makes me sad to think that these grumpy gits are foten so wrapped up in their own melancholy that their gramce can’t be softened by a toddler grinning & waving at them. Our children are so innocent, it often makes me more sad to see thri faces when they think they have done something to deserve the withering look they get in return for a smile.
    I hope no one ever thinks me a grumpy git!

  32. older mum in a muddle April 24, 2013 / 10:32 pm

    I can so relate to this – have had it myself. Why don’t these grumpy buggers realise that a child just doesn’t understand the current ways of the world – children are innocent and happy and in the moment, and these grumpy buggers should allow a child’s enthusiasm to cheer up their day – they would feel so much better for it!

  33. TheBoyandMe April 30, 2013 / 5:58 pm

    I absolutely and categorically agree with you! Life is never so bad that you can’t smile at a child, or indeed be kind to another human being regardless of age. This is brilliant Tas, one of my favourite posts I’ve read anywhere in a long time.

  34. Hugh Villasana May 4, 2013 / 3:21 pm

    Awesome posting in Dear Grumpy Person – Not My Year Off. I liked reading this article. If you like, please visit my website.

  35. Luci - mother.wife.me May 14, 2013 / 10:23 am

    Totally get your sentiment. I do wonder though, if someone is seemingly so caught up in themselves that they can’t even raise a smile for a small child, that they may well be suffering from some kind of depression or mental health issue.

  36. Muddling Along May 14, 2013 / 11:19 am

    Come on – consider walking a mile in their shoes before you judge

    How do you know they aren’t battling with infertility, have recently lost a pregnancy and your lovely energetic toddler is yet another reminder of the baby they can’t have?

    Or their husband has lost his job, has spent 18 months looking for another and they cannot work out how to make ends meet despite taking on extra hours so that they don’t see their children during the week and your lovely happy toddler reminds them of what they are missing?

    Or that their job is now under pressure, they can’t work out how to pay the mortgage, they have sold everything that isn’t nailed down on ebay and they are still mentally rehearsing how to make ends meet and your lovely happy toddler reminds them that they can’t afford new shoes for their toddler?

    Hmmmmmmmm?

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