I took the kids for our weekly grocery store run yesterday. I usually try to time it so that I can go by myself (because every mom needs a mini vacation) but that just wasn’t possible this week. As soon as I walked in the door, I saw that it was packed. Grocery shopping is hard enough with three kids, but add a huge crowd in the mix and it becomes a circus show.
I had the baby in a baby carrier, the toddler in the grocery cart, and my oldest pushing the minerature cart next to mine. As I swiveled my way through the crowd trying to scratch things off of my list and get out of the store as quickly as possible, I hear someone speak up from behind.
“You sure have your hands full.”
I hear this phrase at least once when I’m out with all three kids. It used to have no effect on me. I’d just smile, say yes, and quickly move on. But now that I hear it all the time, the phrase has started to drive me nuts. While I don’t think that the people that say this to me are trying to be negative (although I have had a few that do mean it that way) and are just trying to create conversation, I do think that there are plenty of other things that you can say to a mother who clearly does have her hands full that would be much more helpful to her.
As I stood there in the busy grocery store with all three kids asking for something at once, I thought to myself that I wish I had some sort of comeback to this person that just pointed out the obvious to me. So I enlisted my fellow friends on the Internet to help and here are their witty responses below:
“We just don’t know how to say no.” — Kellyn G.
I seriously laughed out loud at this response. You know some people are thinking it and their “nice” way of saying it is by the “hands full” phrase, so why not point out what they’re really thinking?
“Want to babysit?” — Clarissa L.
Because I’d love a babysitter for these exact moments!
“Not really. My hands are empty.” — Amy C.
An appropriate response for all of the babywearing parents out there!
“It just looks that way cause my hands are small. I can handle way more this this.” — @hiptot
Until you are a parent, you have no idea how much you can hold in your hands or even do with one hand. Even with three kids at the grocery store, I can handle much more than it may seem.
“Yes … my hands and my heart” — @jill_jano
I love this response. During those moments that I seem completely overwhelmed as a mom of three, my heart is still completely full.
“But my heart is fuller.” — @tinico
No matter how full my hands may seem, it will never surpass the amount of love that fills my heart from my three children.
“Yes, the best full possible” — @onemomsworld
I wouldn’t want to fill my hands with anything better!
“Right? Will you take a few?” — @littlehipsqueaks
I’d love to see their response to this. Especially as one is screaming, the other is throwing a tantrum, and the other is begging for more of the food samples in the back of the store.
“Nah. There’s always room for more.” — @thebestpartofme
This is the best response for those that say it to you in a negative way because they think you are crazy for having children.
“Better than empty.” — @barefeetonthedashboard
That’s for sure!
“You need to get a new line.” — @blanqigirls
If I’m feeling extra snappy and know that they are trying to insult me, this is a great line to use.
“Want to lend me one of your empty hands?” — Nicole W.
If only they really could. I’d love if I said this back to someone and they offered to give me a helping hand. That would be a perfect way to help out a parent with their “hands full.”
So what would your response be to the phrase, “You have your hands full?”