Remedial parenting

I might need to ask a trusted American friend to teach me how to be an American mother. We haven't been back in the States for even 10 hours and I'm already feeling like a fish out of water when it comes to handling Miriam in public.

We went to a casual restaurant for dinner with Jeremy's brother and during the course of the meal, Miriam wandered off to visit with some small children at another table. In Jordan, this is no big deal, at all. In fact, the mother of the children would probably play with Miriam and invite us all over to sit with them. They're just that friendly and accepting of other people's children.

But this American mom looked at me a little strangely as I continued eating my dinner, keeping my eye on Miriam at the same time. I asked Dave (Jeremy's brother) if it was abnormal for Miriam to be doing that, and he said that in his opinion, it probably was a little strange.

So I kept Miriam fairly corralled for the rest of dinner. Now I don't know how to act with Miriam! I'm afraid everything I do will be wrong, or not the "American way." And so far, I much prefer the Arab way. I hope I can find a happy medium soon before I get too afraid to take Miriam out of the house!

In which I nearly curse

Vienna airport thoughts