Parents

The Sweet Reason A Stranger Photographed This Mom In The Grocery Store

Jess Wolfe posted about her unusual grocery store outing on Facebook.
08/07/2017 03:17pm ET

A sweet Facebook post from a busy mom of four is reminding parents that the little things matter.

On August 2, Jess Wolfe posted a photo of herself at the grocery store with her four kids: 7-year-old Zion, 6-year-old Ezra, 3-year-old Ireleigh and 6-month-old Salem.

In the caption, she shared the lovely story behind the impromptu family photo.

Describing the photo, she wrote, “Sweaty, baby strapped to my back, three year old insisting that her belly hurts and NEEDS her donut that she forgot to eat after lunch, 6 year old using everything in sight as a weapon, 7 year old wanting to spend the only dollar he has. This. This was my trip to the grocery today.”

Wolfe explained that while she was bagging her groceries at Aldi (“trying to quietly keep from losing my ever loving sh*t”), a woman next to her asked if she had a camera phone. The mom said she did, and the stranger then asked if she could use it to take a photo of Wolfe with her kids at the grocery store.

“She told me that she wishes she had photos of herself doing everyday things with her kids,” Wolfe recalled. “She validated the fact that a simple grocery trip is hard. She told me that what I do matters. She doesn’t miss what made the days hard, but she misses what made them sweet. I will always cherish this picture and the message that came with it.”

Wolfe’s post received more than 130,000 likes. She told HuffPost that she and her children had passed the woman who took their photo a couple times while they were shopping, and she gave “a few sympathetic smiles.”

After posing for the checkout photo, Wolfe and her kids went to the car to load their groceries. The mom, who works as a photographer, decided to take a look at the picture, though she expected to be disappointed by it.

“I hadn’t showered, my kids looked pretty disheveled and we just weren’t pulled together,” she explained. “As a professional photographer, I wasn’t super excited about what I was expecting to see. Instead, I was completely overwhelmed by her kindness, and the fact that she caught me in the act of doing something totally ordinary.”

In that moment, Wolfe decided to share the photo and the stranger’s message on Facebook. “In the past I have had a lot of my online friends comment on how great our life looks and how perfect we seem,” she explained. “It’s just not an accurate representation of our everyday life, you know? I loved being able to share this little peek into our life along with the words that she shared with me.”

The mom said she’s been pleasantly surprised to see how many people the post has reached. She decided to create a Facebook page to share more encouraging words and stories for other parents “who are just making it up as we go,” Wolfe said.

The mom wants to use her viral fame to encourage people to take the stranger’s words to heart.

Said Wolfe, “I hope that other moms see that there is so much beauty in the ordinary, mundane parts of motherhood and that there is an entire tribe of moms out there who have our backs.”