It happened. I yelled at someone else’s kid at the splash park. I knew it was a possibility, I just didn’t expect it to actually ever happen.
When we got to the splash park (a playground with random sprinklers and fountains that come out of the ground) my sister pointed out this kid and told me that he had sprayed my nephew right in the face with his little water cannon. I heard the kid’s dad remind him not to spray anyone unless they have agreed to play like that. Good job Dad, the situation was handled.
I watch the kid play and I start to feel bad for him. He doesn’t have anyone there to play with and is a little too old for the splash park. Then I see him debate spraying other kids. I can see the mean, little thought cross his mind. He would smirk and kind of squint at them, just like the bullies in movies but would restrain himself and move on.
A little while later I turn just in time to see him spray my son square in the middle of the back. This shouldn’t be a big deal since it is a splash park but the water was freezing and nobody likes being sprayed at close range when they aren’t expecting it. Another random mom had seen the whole thing and told him it wasn’t very nice and not to spray people.
Fast forward fifteen minutes. The kid’s dad had left the area to go to the concession stand. He knows he is unsupervised and is on the prowl. He loads up his water cannon and shoots my 1-year-old baby right in the face!
“Noooooo!!!!!!!!!! Absolutely not! You do not shoot that thing at anyone else. That is completely unacceptable, do you understand me?”
I didn’t even hesitate. That was the shocking part to me. I had zero reservations about yelling at someone else’s kid in public.
Typically, I will talk to other kids if they are hurt or being mean, but I always am careful to not over step and cause an issue with the other parent. It is kind of dumb, but I guess I see it as picking my battles. I don’t think everything needs a serious reaction so I often let things go.
But I learned that just because I don’t often have occasion to use them doesn’t mean that I don’t have mama bear instincts. I do. I really do. I feel all primal and wild when I think about protecting my babies. I will shred you with my claws! I will gnash my teeth and roar.
Okay so maybe I don’t have actual claws or a vicious roar. I have never actually had any type of incident that has made me wish I did so I could shred anyone. But I will, apparently, yell at a 10-year-old at a splash park.