Thursday, November 06, 2008

Tales of a Paranoid Mommy

I've talked before about how paranoid I am when it comes to the boy.  Since the day he was born, I've lived with fear in my stomach that something will happen to him.  The line, for me, between cool, laid-back mommy who can handle or deflect anything thrown at her and OCD mommy that won't let  him out of the yard unless he's tethered to me with a rope is very thin, and I work very hard not to cross it.  It's only been within the last year that I've overcome my anxiety about taking him to the park by myself (for fear that we'll be attacked); trust me when I say that was a BIG step.

It doesn't help, either, that I'm a devotee of Law & Order: SVU...  yes, that's the version that deals with all the rape and child molestation.  What can I say?  I just can't look at Christopher Meloni enough...

Can you blame me?
Anywhoo...  about two weeks ago, I was at the public library with the boy.  Let me digress for just a moment and say that the boy loves the library, absolutely loves it, can't get enough of it, which thrills me.  So we're in the children's section, which has a nice window-bench seat that runs along the entire length of one wall.  I'm sitting at one end of the bench looking through a knitting book, and the boy is laying next to me on his stomach, flipping through at Thomas the Tank Engine collection.  I notice a tall, heavy-set boy plop down on the opposite end of the bench, about 20 feet or so away from us.  He looked to me to be about 13 years old, and I thought it was somewhat inappropriate that he laid down on the bench, but I didn't really pay much attention to him beyond that.
After a few minutes, I noticed, out of the corner of my eye, him stand up and adjust the front of his shorts in an odd manner, and start walking towards us.  As he walked past the boy, he paused, and reached down to ruffle the boy's hair.  What older child does that to a younger child, I ask you?
It was at this point that the hair on the back of my neck stood up.
He walked past us into the stacks of children's books... and now keep in mind these are little children's books, not even the middle children's books.  A minute or two later, he walked back to the bench with a book, and sat down right next to the boy.  He started flipping through the book in a way that, to me, seemed as if he was trying to get my son interested in what he was looking at.
I put down the knitting book I'd been looking at, and just blatently stared at him.  The boy was still laying on his stomach on the bench, with his head next to me and his feet towards this... person of interest.  Was it my imagination, or did this freak just adjust the front of his shorts again while glancing at my son's backside?  I can't even begin to tell you the scenarios that started flashing in my head.  By now, the boy was up on his knees, trying to get a look at the book the freak was looking at, and the freak was mumbling something about it being a really good book that he loved when he was a kid, blah, blah, blah...  and all I could think about was if he offered to take my son to the restroom, I'd kick him in the raisins, grab the boy and run.
He stood up after a minute and started to walk away.  Abruptly, he turned around and asked if we ever took home the books on tape that come with the storybook for the kids, so you can listen and read along at the same time.  They're really great, he said... then he blurted out I'LL GIVE YOU THREE GUESSES TO GUESS HOW OLD I AM!
Heaven help me.  Would it be improper to say 'I really don't give a shit' in the middle of the library? 
I guessed 13.
I guessed 12.
Closer, but still no.
I guessed 10.
Low and behold, I was right.  Now, call me cynical, but this kid was pushing 5'10", and had to weigh 180lbs.  At ten years old?  I find that hard to believe.  But who knows.
The boy decided he wanted to look at the kids videos then, and the freak followed us.  "What kind of videos are you looking for, little buddy?" he asked my son.  No joke...  he actually called the boy 'little buddy'.  I'd had enough, and told the boy it was time to go. 
I told the husband about the incident, and of course I'm not on the look-out everytime we walk into the library (and we go there a lot...).
Maybe it really is time for Xanax...


Teresa Paulina said...

I can tell you all about Xanax! Get the extended release type!

and the dude did seem freaky... i'm paranoid too...

I'm with you there... rather be safe than *shudder*...

Just Me said...

I'm kind of with you...I think there's something to be said for maternal instinct. I'd say you don't need xanax just yet. Hug the boy for us. ANd I mean that in an aunt-ish kind of way. :D
Hugs for you too Mom!