It had been a miserable day weather wise, the Mummy was on maternity leave and thought the five year old needed to get out and spend some of his energy running about. What's more fun that a soft play on a wet day?
The 5 year old was having a lovely time running around. The baby however wasn't. She was fractious and tired. The baby needed to sleep, she was screaming and crying. The Mummy was rocking the buggy but the baby never slept in the buggy, life was far too interesting.
The Mummy rocked, she tried feeding the baby, she checked the baby's nappy. She did everything she could think of. People were staring. People were glaring. And tutting. The baby continued to scream, not a quiet cry. Huge racking screams.
Beneath the glares of other parents, there was no sympathy. Just looks of condemnation. "How can she let that baby cry for so long? Why doesn't she do something?" Not one person who looked over as if to say "hey, we're all parents, we've all been there". No concern apart from one elderly gentleman, possibly a Grandparent who just said "It gets easier".
At the back of the soft play, the Mummy cried, She gathered up her happy 5 year old, the screaming baby and left. She cried all the way home.
Sometimes we all need a gentle word or even a kind look. Just a half smile to acknowledge you recognise what someone else is going through.
A kind word can go a long way.