Today started out great… which should have been my first warning.

Both kids woke up happy.  Everyone ate their breakfast without complaining.  There was zero fighting before my 2nd grader hopped on the bus.  Things were looking good for this Friday.

I decided to venture out into the world with the 4 year old in tow.  Running a few errands before the busy weekend shopping crowd seemed like a smart decision.  Where to?!  None other than the lovely Bed, Bath, & Beyond.

Why did I press my luck?!

I’m not gonna lie, shopping for new bed sheets at Bed Bath & Beyond with the son is NOT high on my list of fun.  I was secretly dreading it since it’s more of a chore than a fun experience.

What was about to unfold however, I could not have imagined.

In the bedding aisle, the son started feeling all the sample sheets they have hanging by the bedding sets.  Turns out he has an affinity for jersey knit.  All of the sudden, he decided he HAD to have a set for his bed.  Not only were they not on my list of what to buy, but the way he demanded them shut down any hope he had of me buying him a set.

I refuse to negotiate with demanding, entitled, whiney children.

He knows this.  He should have known I would stand my ground.

He dug his heels in and threw the biggest tantrum I have yet to live through in a public place.  I’m talking full body movements, ear curdling screams, and even random threats falling out of his (no longer cute) mouth.

I had a choice:  I could give into this tiny dictator to stop the embarrassment, or I could stand my ground and not care about the nasty looks I was receiving from the other shoppers. (Side note: when has that ever been okay?!  Are you really telling me the older lady glaring at me to shut my child up doesn’t have children or has never been around children?!  Luckily (for her) I’m evolved and didn’t feel the need to give her a piece of my mind about her rude judgement.)

I chose to teach my son a lesson; I’m not a mom who is going to let you control me.

Not at home, not in public.  I’m in charge.  It took every ounce of me to not lose my mind on him and the surrounding “judgy judgersons.”

About 5 minutes into his fit (which felt like hours), I got down on my knees, told him we don’t act like this.  He is getting nothing due to his attitude and theatrics.  We were buying my sheets and leaving.

No, this didn’t stop his screaming and thrashing, but it did give me a small reason to be proud of myself.  I marched him through the store during his loud protest.  I made sure to make eye contact with everyone we passed, and made sure to keep a half smile on my face.  (Stay strong, don’t cower, was the mantra running through my head.)

Right before we got to the checkout, a lady looked at me and told me that she was sure I was having a bad day. Really?!?  Thanks for letting me know.  I suddenly became determined to not let this moment ruin my entire day. Rude, rude, rude,

The girl at the checkout was clearly happy to apply all my coupons and push us along.  I told her she was welcome for the dose of birth control, which did make her smile.  The other girl working walked around the counter on my way out to tell me that she gets it; and that she has been in this situation many times with her three kids.  This girl saved humanity in my mind today.

So…. after all of that the son kept it up through the parking lot.

He punched the car, became a limp noodle when I tried to get him into his car seat, and even broke his coveted sunglasses and then launched them at my head.  Guess what?!?  I didn’t lose my cool.  Maybe it was the Chai Tea Latte I had running through my veins (thank goodness I stopped at Starbucks on the way to the store), or maybe it was my stubbornness of not letting this ruin my Friday.

All I know is when I started the car and the Bebe Rexha song “I’m a Mess” was on singing, “Everything’s gonna be alright, everything’s gonna be Ok.  It’s gonna be a good good life; that’s what my therapist says,” that everything would eventually work out.

If you’re reading this and you’re having a day, or a week, or heck, even what feels like an eternity of frustrating parenting moments; just know that you have a long line of people right there in the trenches with you.

Being closer to 40 now than 30, I’m realizing it doesn’t matter what everyone else thinks or says.  I need to do what’s best for me and my family.  I’ll let the judgers judge and I’ll be feeling just fine in my caffeinated bubble.