Yesterday, Joseph and I were peacefully shopping at Winco (I let Joseph eat his way through the store- animal crackers? Chex mix? Fruit snack? Yes, yes, and yes!) when I was accosted by a Catholic woman.
How do I know she was Catholic?
Well, partly because, by the time I could pull myself from her grasp, I knew her entire life story (Five kids, one 15 years behind everyone else, her husband’s job is on the rocks, and- by the way- she has a bad cold), but mostly because she cornered me to extend an invitation to a Catholic Mother’s conference this weekend.
Well, here are the problems with that:
1) My sister and her family are in Boise this weekend (woot!woot!)
2) I am not Catholic.
I offered my excuses weakly, but she plowed ahead with her life-story-telling, and promises of the sunshine, rainbows, and TREATS that awaited me at the conference.
At this point, I probably should have taken my (now whining) baby and said, “No thanks!” and walked away.
Or maybe, she should have taken the hint from my crying Protestant child and let me go on my merry way.
But no, I smiled, said, "Well, we'll have to see..." and took a flier.
It didn't end there.
She started talking about the play group that she was involved in, and how they had so much fun, ate lots of food while the children played, etc.
Always a sucker for food, I perked up.
And gave her my number to call me with play group information.
What the heck, Caitlin?!
What were you thinking?
And yet, there I stood with a dopey smile on my face, thinking "Wow! Treats and maybe a few new friends? Sign me up."
Then she left, saying "How interesting to have a non-Catholic woman come to our playgroup! I bet that we will both learn a lot."
Wait. What does that mean?
You and I both know - CONVERSION.
So, my enthusiasm for snacks was dampened, and I continued my shopping with a sick feeling in my stomach.
Why can't I ever say no? (It's a quality that Brian loves about me)
Right as I was about to leave, the lady found me, stopped me again and said,
"I just want to tell you- Bless you for doing the right thing and staying home with your children."
And she walked away.
Again, I say what the heck?
First of all, she didn't even know that I stay home with Joseph! Despite the fact that I know her life story, she knows nothing about me because I didn't have a chance to speak. Were the sweatpants a giveaway?
Secondly, the "right thing?" The right thing for ME, sure, but I don't think that being a working mom is the WRONG thing.
If you can't swing it on one income- then you are going to need two.
If you don't want to stay home with your kiddos- then by all means, don't!
The self-righteousness of it all just rubs me the wrong way.
So, now I am in a pickle.
Poor, Lori is going to call me, and I am going to have to lie and say that Brian won't let me go.
And that I have to respect his wishes since he is the head of the household.
At least I know that she'll approve.
(UPDATE: If you are a Catholic reader, know that I love you. I have no problems with the Catholic faith at. all. Just this particular lady. I have encountered this pushiness from MANY other religions as well, it all depends on the individual. In fact I would go so far as to say that Catholics + Me = best friends. So, no hating on my part. Thank you.)