Feeding a hungry baby in public is a challenging moment for any parent, but what if your child has special needs? As one mom recently found out, the experience can be nerve-wracking–but when a kind stranger offers support to a fellow mom, it can make all the difference in the world.
For Hannah Wingert, the first time she had to feed her son, Davy, in public was a daunting moment. Three-month-old Davy uses a G-tube, and they had been on their way home his medical appointment when they stopped at Target to grab a few things. Realizing it was time for Davy to be fed, she pulled her shopping cart over to the cafe area to find an empty table.
“I was so nervous, I was shaking,” recalled the mom, who wrote about the moment in a blog post on TheMighty. As she began laying out all the tubes, bottles, and materials she’d need for the complicated task, her son was screaming. So nervous that she spilled some of the formula, she then noticed another mom nearby–who had been nursing her own baby–now watching her curiously.
“In my anxious state, I was sure she was either judging me for not breastfeeding my baby or wondering what in the world was wrong with my son,” wrote Wingert, author of the blog Sunshine and Spoons. But seconds later, she was in for a shock.
The other mom began to speak, first politely asking if Davy was using a G-tube. When Wingert told her yes, she mentioned that her sister had also used a tube like that. The two began chatting about the complicated tubes and their babies, and before the kind stranger headed out, she offered a few more encouraging words to the previously flustered young mom.
It meant the world to Wingert, who before that hadn’t been able to relate to other moms about her son’s delicate care needs. “After three months of feeling like my whole world had been turned upside down, being able to talk to another mom about tube feeding was like a breath of fresh air. Having such a positive experience the first time I had to tube feed in public helped ease my fears about doing so. We never exchanged names, but talking to the other mom that day at the Target cafe made more of an impact on me than she will ever know.”
We’re sure this is one grateful mom who will pass along the bit of unexpected kindness.