It rarely happens, but when it does, it’s something big.
One of my least favorite things to do is to go to Walmart. It’s one of those necessary evils that has to be done if we want to eat in the Daily household. I’ve tried going other places, but always end up spending more than if I would have gone to Walmart. The Walmart curse is that eventually, if not every time you go, you’re going to see something or someone that repulses you. I mean, google “The People Of Walmart” if you need evidence of what I’m talking about. I’m guilty of snapping a few pictures – a guy with a mullet in isle five debating on what kind of peanut butter to buy, a girl with a too tight shirt (and no bra) in the frozen food section (you get my drift). You know, just the typical people of Walmart stuff. Sometimes you hear things, like a woman screaming at her child from three isles over, or a man and a woman arguing about cheese – do we spend the extra fifty cents on the regular cheese or go for the Great Value brand?
Either way, it didn’t see to bother me as much when I parked my car at Walmart that Thursday. It was a beautiful day, and I was just running in to pick up a few things for Kameron for his CYO weekend camp. I wasn’t going to be there long, in and out I told myself as I walked in. I walked through the isles quickly with toothpaste, bug spray, and shampoo on my mind. Checking off mentally everything I needed, I was on my way to self check out and, in record time, out of Walmart. Self checkout was slow, which is typical. I saw that there was just one family checking out the next isle over. Victory, I’m almost outta here!
There was a mother, looked early twenties, a grandmother, who looked early forties (maybe even late thirties) and a little girl who looked about two and a half. The grandma and mother looked tired, and well you know, Walmart-ish. The little girl was adorable. She had light blonde hair with tiny curls (the ones most women would kill to have.) Her clothes looked a little dirty, her hands a little messy, but all that could be forgiven from her sweet, but rather loud voice. She was rambunctious. I thought to myself why don’t they have her in the seat of the cart? They’re let the child run wild. Wild she was, scurrying around picking up things and asking if she could have them. I laughed to myself, and thought of Kameron when he was that age always wanting out of the cart. I would never let him run wild around a store.
Then something happened that I will never forget.
The little girl picked up a package of cookies and quickly asked Mi Mi (the grandmother) if she could have them. The grandmother said “No, you can’t have them.” I thought to myself, probably enough sugar for the day the way she was running about. Then Mi Mi asked “do you know why?” The little girl said “yes, because I’m fat.”
The grandmother turned and looked at me, then turned back to the little girl and said “yes, that’s right, you’re fat.” The little girl put the cookies back and went over to her mother.
I looked at the mother, who had obviously heard what just happened. She looked at me as if to say, lady I’m tired. She was obviously too stupid to realize what just happened, or maybe she just flat out didn’t care.
They left, I paid for my stuff. Got in my car, started the engine, and sat there for a moment. I thought to myself, they’re killing her. Not like cutting her up into pieces killing her, but killing what self esteem she could have or should have at two and a half years old. It was very upsetting to me.
As girls and as women, we have a hard enough time fitting into what “standards” other people have created for us. It may sound cliche, but we see it everywhere, on tv, movies, magazines, the internet, everywhere we go, everything we see says this is what is beautiful, and if you’re not half of that, then there must be something wrong with you. Unless you have fantastic support from the people that are suppose to love you the most, your family, your self esteem can go sideways.
I hope for that little girl that she can break out of that situation, to be strong enough to realize that she is beautiful, as we all are.
If I knew I wouldn’t get arrested, I would have punched Mi Mi right in the face.