Status: Drafting the fourth book in the PERILOUS series!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Scandal at the Library

Sometimes I think I'm never going out in public with my children again. Especially the library.

Last week I took my two children into the library with me and we started loading up our basket. We always grab a handful of movies, several children's books, and a few books for me. I always wish I had a shopping cart because carrying the little one and two bags of heavy books makes for an awkward visit.

There's one particular librarian who either doesn't like me or doesn't like my children. Or both. One time during story time, Asher walked up to the front of the group so he could stare at the book up close. Too close. She called me to come and get him. Ouch.

My library has only one check-out counter and seven self-check-out machines. I love them, they're so easy. But they require both hands. I got in the habit of putting Asher on the counter next to me while I 'rang up' my books and put them in their plastic sack. Until said librarian got on to me for having him up there. Now I hook my legs around him while I check out.

Another time when Jacen was in story time, Asher was being so disruptive that the story teller asked me to take him in the hall. She knew Jacen and assured me he would be fine.

Apparently after I left Jacen needed a drink of water. Story teller told him to go ahead, not realizing he didn't know where it was. He wandered around until the Librarian found him and brought him to me, telling me he's too young to be left by himself in the library.


Granted, my kids are disruptive. They definitely are. And on this particular day a week ago, Asher gave me a big grin and took off.

Jacen was sitting quietly, playing with a puzzle. I said, "Jacen, I need to get Asher. Can you sit right here and wait for me?"

"Uh-huh," he said.

"I'll be right back. Don't go anywhere."



I managed to swoop in and catch Asher before he exited the building. I scold him and head back. Only to find--you guessed it--the Librarian approaching, stern expression on face, Jacen's hand in hers.

I seriously wanted to melt into a puddle and disappear.

I looked at Jacen and said, "Jacen! I told you to wait!"

She said, "He was standing in middle of the reading center, calling you." Wow, if her voice was any icier, I would have become a popsicle.

Well, you know what, it suddenly irritated me that this woman was chastising me. I'm sure she knows who I am and thinks I'm the worst mother. My kids are the terrors of the library. But I bristled up and said, "Well, I couldn't exactly hear him from the bathroom."

We all know I wasn't in the bathroom; I was chasing my 1-year-old. But the exit and the bathrooms are right next to each other. I had a baby in my arms and a diaper bag over my shoulder. She didn't know I wasn't in the restroom. She handed Jacen to me and I fled, vowing never to return again with my children. Or without a hat and trench coat.

Oh, how embarrassing.

Do you have any places you've vowed not to return to until after dying your hair and getting a new face?


Kate said...

Sounds like your children are pretty normal. Do these librarians realize the children's section is for CHILDREN?

Oh--and I've done that leg wrestle thing far too many times at the grocery store. Why is the counter only big enough for a checkbook?

David J. West said...

I completely relate it has made my taking the kids to the Library drop off big time.

Tamara Hart Heiner said...

oh, Kate, I'm so glad! I thought my children were holy terrors! Whew!

David, I'm all about leaving them in the car while I run into the library--but I think that's illegal...

M. Gray said...

Sheesh, Tamara. Why can't you get a handle on your kids? Mine are perfect angels and I can take them anywhere or do anything. Especially this last Sunday, how I substituted for my son's class. The lesson was on being a good example and can I just say what a PERFECT example he was???

*clears throat* I wouldn't know ANYTHING about ANY of this frustration you speak of...

Tamara Hart Heiner said...

LOL, Mary!!!

Rhiannon Hart said...

What a self-righteous ass that librarian is!

Jordan McCollum said...

I think we can all rest assured that librarian was never a child. Or if she was, she wasn't a very good one. (And by good, I don't mean well behaved.)

This reminded me of this bizarre story: http://segullah.org/daily-special/applause/

(I hope that link works; the embedded comment form never lets me cut and paste.)

Kate said...

Oh you poor thing - what a mean librarian. It sounds to me like your children are in fact children not miniture adults. I would have thought most people realise that children are disruptive sometimes... Anyway hope she is just having a moody few months.

Kate x

Simon C. Larter said...

Oh, I feel you on the mortification thing. My son just terrorized the doctor's office, sticking fingers into sterilized jars, playing with the swinging gate, etc. I tell myself he'll grow out of it.

But really, the librarian can just deal. Kids are kids.

LMJ said...

Oh my goodness! They're children! I don't believe this librarian is a mom, or she just has too much time on her hands!

Vicky said...

Gosh. Big grumpy librarian. She;s the reason people have such horrible stereotypes of librarians. Sheesh!

And yeah, I have been through that. Last week, I set off all the alarms at my church. Yeah, I'm that talented. The elders weren't very happy with me. I know how that is.

Bethany Wiggins said...

The library with kids is soooo not fun. My little boy thinks any place that isn't home is a park. He runs, screams, swings from the bookshelves, pulls books from the shelves... Ugh. I don't do the library with him any more.

Tamara Hart Heiner said...

Jordan, going to check out that website now!

No kidding, Kate! They're just children!

Simon and Vicky, I'm glad to know that you know what I'm feeling. Vicky, I can't stop laughing at the idea of you pulling the alarms at church!

Bethany,I think our children would get along splendidly!

JennyMac said...

She told your son to sit down? wow. Children's story time, evidently not for children.

Jaime Theler said...

I'm now having flashbacks to 5 years ago when my kids were younger. I used to joke with the librarians that I'd never lose my kids in a public place because you could always follow the sounds of pandemonium. Yeah, I've so been there. It will get better!

Tamara Hart Heiner said...

Jenny and Jaime, I'm just sitting here laughing.

Vicky said...

Gasp! I would never pull an alarm. lol. No, I went into a room that I wasn't supposed to and the alarm started in there and when I went to get someone to turn it off, every alarm in the church started going off.

Dianna said...

I agree about the shopping cart thing. That would solve so many of my problems. Juggling a 3 month old in one hand and a bag full of books in the other chasing down a two year old just isn't working for me. I once took my stroller in because I was too exhausted to chase and carry and such. I got several dirty looks as I tried to weave in and out of people and they wouldn't let me take in into the children's section at all. Clara loves story time and I love getting new books, but some days I seriously consider whether or not it is worth it.

Tamara Hart Heiner said...

Vicky, I'm still dying laughing! I can't believe you did that!

Dianna, I hear you!!! Library time: Is it worth it? Hmm, might be a future blog post.

Aaron and Emily said...

You march yourself right back that library WITH your kids. You show that librarian that she can't tell you what kind of a mommy you are. EVERYONE has a "my children are being little terrors" moments. This probably happens MORE in the library for you because your kids are used to getting yelled at by her, or feel like they will be chastised by you because of her. I saw my friend shopping the other day (think if carts) and her kid was SCREAMING the ENTIRE hour. Even when I was on the other side of the store, I could hear him! And I could hear people "commenting" on her mothering skills. People just don't THINK. They see ONE moment of a kid having a tantrum or misbehaving and think that it's a reflection of parenting skills. Don't let anyone, especially a crotchety librarian, tell you how what kind of mom you are because I know you are great.

Tamara Hart Heiner said...

LOL, Em, thanks so much for the vote of confidence! It brought tears to my eyes!

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