Kids in Cafés
“You’ll have to excuse me, I don’t hit or bully my children and as a result I’m raising these god damn free spirits.”
“Hopefully your next customers have a couple of robots for you to feed.” It wasn’t until recently that I learned what the majority of the general publics opinion towards kids at cafes was. And like usual, it differed to mine. Doing my daily troll of the news sites through Facebook and more importantly the comments under the stories I stumbled across an article on children and how welcome they are in cafes. The general opinion was quite shocking. I learned that apparently children are welcome in cafes but only if they are well behaved. In other words, children who behave like adults are welcome in public and those who act their age must stay at home. Now I’m a mother of 2 of Fremantle’s biggest turds, yet I still frequent cafes every single day. Not once have I bought into the idea that maybe my tribe and I weren’t welcome. Yes I’ve had head shakes and we’ve even been kicked out of a few places for my sons nudity, daughter’s lack of shoes, my son killed a tadpole, daughter stole chocolate etc etc and the list goes on. The key, I believe to our cafe consistency despite all of this is one simple fact. I don’t care. If I can get us all back to my car with a belly fully of soy chai and no criminal charges, it’s a win. My personal favourite was a comment on this particular news site, by a clearly inexperienced 20 something year old woman who’s pride and joy was obviously her job as her profile pic was her in her ultra flattering FIFO fluro yellow outfit; “I don’t mind mums bringing their kids to cafes, but when a kid is chucking a massive tantrum and the mum is just sitting there not doing anything to stop them I get mad” Now this piece of parenting 101 had the support of 54 ‘likes’, a feeling I’m yet to revel in but can imagine it puffs the feathers nicely. That mum that our FIFO goddess is shaming? That’s me. Actually I’m worse, I won’t sit back and do nothing while my child screams his head off ruining everyones morning paper, I’ll probably grab my phone and check my Instagram or text a picture of the tantrum to a friend and do my very best to ignore the entire situation. As most people with toddler tantrum experience will tell you, time is the only healer, soothing, pandering, pretending to give a fuck is all just to make you look like a better mum and will actually serve no purpose in shortening the time of said tantrum. You’re better off sneaking out and hoping your child doesn’t follow. So if anyone’s wondering thats most probably the reason why mums look as if they don’t care, trust me, they do. We want our kids to enjoy their milkshakes and have a good time but when your 2 and you can’t find a slide or a tree or can’t have the 3rd chocolate you wants you tend to express yourself, vocally. And why is this anyone else’s problem but yours? Because children are our FUTURE. They are as big a part of this community as we are and carry just as much importance. Children matter, they should be brought to cafes and restaurants and slowly taught the art of our culture. Mums count, the morning coffee and socialisation of a woman raising tomorrows generation of miracle workers is just as important if not more than that of a loser in a suit. Don’t get me started on the coin we part with in a cafe, a milkshake, piece of cake and coffee – trust me, we pay for our 30 minutes of public adulthood. Who the fuck wants to spend their entire day in a park? We don’t love it as much as our working husbands think we do. Today I shall leave you with the idea that maybe the next time you see a new mum in a cafe just trying to down some hot liquid sanity, struggling while her little bundle of turd stress’s the crap out of her remember this one thing, its probably not the baby that is overwhelming her, its probably the thought that she no longer feels welcome or the judgemental eyes that are ruining her morning and when in that situation you’d never believe how far a bit of kindness can go. She’s a mum, she’s had no sleep, she doesn’t wee alone, she’s a hero and she deserves a free fucking coffee. And here is my son, on the run after stripping off, spilling a milkshake and kicking a pregnant woman at our local cafe.