It is the evening party of the annual town-hall of the firm. Free-flowing drinks, music, food, and ambience – the usual company sponsored “look-we-care-for-you” fun. Family is invited. Everyone is having a gala time. Well, almost everyone.
The 5-year-old kid certainly isn’t. She can’t understand the noise, or the silly grins on the faces of her sloshed parents; dancing to the music as if there was no tomorrow, while she sits on a bar stool looking lost.
All she needs is some attention. She tries her usual antics and then some – tantrums, throwing assorted hors d’oeuvres at her parents, tugging at her mother’s less-than-decent-for-a-mother evening gown, even pulling her long hair. But to no avail.
The young mother has decided she had had enough – today she isn’t going to care. She is being romanced by, what is believed to be, her husband. They are clearly reliving their yesteryears; something she hasn’t indulged in every day, certainly not in a long long time. No, she isn’t a bad mother either, really. But her life is a compromise – today she’d let her daughter make one instead.
Of course, you would see and absorb all of this in the fleeting moments you spend scanning the crowd from the opposite side of the hall. Feel sorry for the moment – but unsure who is it that you really are sorry for; the kid or her mother – and move on. You care, but you have your own problems.
So you ignore, instead.
That’s just your style of coping.