Tuesday, July 15, 2008

What are people thinking???

I have another work story....

Last Friday night at work, it was about 11pm and I looked up when I heard a couple little girls crying and whining to their mom that they were tired, etc. The girls were probably ages 5 and 3. the mom was looking very calmly through some greeting cards and didn't even seem to notice the girls whines. I kind of rolled my eyes and went back to my work. (this is a common occurrence at work!)

At about 2am there were a couple interesting pages over the intercom for my boss--being the nosey person that I am, I went to the location and saw the same lady with her two girls and found out that the lady was DEMANDING that someone cut some fabric for her (We don't have anyone available to cut fabric between 10pm and 7am) I wasn't able to stick around to see how it all turned out...but by this time at least, one of her girls (the 5 year old) had fallen asleep and the mom had put her in a cart on some pillows to sleep.

As I was coming back from my lunch at about 430am I saw the lady AGAIN looking through some post cards at the back of the store-now BOTH girls were asleep and they were in their own carts-both laying on some pillows as bedding. I kind of stood there completely baffled....WHY was this lady STILL at the store??? WHY was she subjecting her kids to being out ALL night?!?

When I got off work at 715am she was STILL there--on the bench at the back off the store looking through all the items that she had picked up during the night and her 5 year old was now awake and she was asking her daughter which of the items she liked/didn't like. I felt that feeling in the pit of my stomach--the one you get when you KNOW you need to do or say something--so I followed my ever fluttering stomach and kind of squatted down next to her and here is how our conversation went:

Me: "I hope you don't mind my asking, but is everything ok?
Her: "Yes, we're fine, why do you ask?"
Me: "Well, you've been here for as long as I have...
Her: "Really? what time is it?
Me: "it's 7:15 am"
Her: "Oh, well, when I get a thought in my mind I just have to see it through"
Me: "Must have been a pretty big thought...
Her: "I am just lucky that my girls can sleep anywhere
Me (to the 5 year old: "How are you doing, sweetie?"
Girl: "tired...."
Me: "What fun it must have been to sleep in a shopping cart all night! You sure are a brave girl!"
Girl: "yep, it was fun"
Mom: "Thank you for your concern-you are the first person to ask me if we are ok"
Me: "Really? that's too bad that no one else talked to you... so, are you ok? Can I do anything for you?
Her: "Nope, we're just fine, I am almost done here and then we'll pay for our stuff and be on our way"
Me: "You're sure?"
Her: "Yes, but thank you so much for your concern! I really appreciate it"
Me: "ok, well, take care of yourself! (to the little girl) Bye sweetie....see you later!"

And that was it.... I still have no idea what she was doing there all night or why, but I was glad at least to know that she seemed sane at least and that her girls were being somewhat taken care of--even if it's not the same way I would do things. I still wonder if maybe she was trying to escape an abusive relationship, or something more serious than just fulfilling an "idea in her head".... I will probably never know.....


Anonymous said...

Bless your heart Megan. That almost makes me cry. I am so glad you followed your feelings and asked her. Sometimes people need to just know someone cares even if she wasn't willing to share anything with you. You can never go wrong by following your promptings like that. I am proud of you. Love ya, Mom C.

Tamsen said...

I'm so proud of you, Meg--and the earlier post about Stephanie proves it. You just never know how something little can make a difference.

arah said...

That was sweet. Sometimes when i see people, i wonder whats going through their mind. I am sure I have had those looks before too.
And the previous post, doesn't it make you feel so good that you made a difference. Who knows where that girl may have gone, but you gave her some good advice and she listened, not many do.
As for the comment on my blog. I thought of you as I wrote it. And I understand the part about "would Preston be here" because I think the same thing about Sarah. Would we have had her if Olivia were here. I know that Olivia will always be with us.
Thank you for the kind words, they are helpfull.
Love ya! Oh yeah, Brinley is jealous that Ash has a loose tooth. She asked if she could go visit her again. I wish we could, maybe next Spring or something.

Russ and Suzanne Ballard said...

That just makes me cry that those wee ones were subjected to that. Do you think she's homeless? Proud of you, Megan, for trying to help. Love, mom