An Open Letter From A Parent To My Starbucks Barista

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

An open letter from a parent to my Starbucks barista

To My Starbucks Barista Today:

I don't know you very well, but I know I wasn't very talkative today.  You see I'm a dad.  And I just stayed up all night with my newborn.  I also have two other kids and I just dropped one off at school.  All this to say that I wish I could have returned your witty banter with some of my own.  However, all I could muster were three words--Grande Nonfat Cappuccino.  

I was also fresh off paternity leave and on my way to the first of two staff meetings this morning.  I really needed my coffee.  I mean badly.  Seriously I don't know if I have ever needed it more than this morning.  I know that you've probably been up since before the sun rose over Mission Peak.  Is that where it rises?  I have no idea but you probably do because of your countless mornings going to work and seeing it.  My last two weeks have all blurred together and I'm just trying to make it through today.  Regardless, just like me you were probably trying to blink away the sleep and so we have something in common.  

I just want to say I appreciate you trying to get me to talk, being understanding that I don't have the words, and trying to brighten my morning anyway.  I know you don't always get the thanks you deserve.  People are on their phones, thinking about their responsibilities for the day, and generally being, well, the type of customer you don't want to deal with.  Except for that one guy who is always way too chipper in the mornings.  You know the one.  

Well, you should know that I wasn't trying to be cranky, or impatient, I was just exhausted from my two week old's party all last night.  The party that lasted from 12 am to 5 am and only him and I were invited to.  The party where he only wanted to be held, or cuddled, or set down, or...well you get the idea.  I was just needing the caffeinated goodness you always provide me in my most desperate of times--like this morning.  Hopefully you could see that hollow, needy look in my eyes.  Hopefully you could tell that you were my hope to make it through this morning.

I needed you and you came through, like you always do.  I would have paid twenty times the amount that you charged me this morning.  Thanks for not making me pay that, by the way.  Thanks for understanding that being a parent sometimes leaves my like this.  Thanks for treating me like I was the happiest, most chipper, and friendliest customer of the morning.  To you I raise my recyclable Starbucks paper cup and hope that me being able to mutter, "Have a good day," was enough.  For that one shining moment this morning, you were my hero.

Your Biggest Fan,
The Lunchbox Dad

#fatherhood

8 comments:

  1. I'm sorry you are so sleep deprived. Having been there twice already, you know it will pass, but that doesn't help today, does it? I'm just happy this Barista was there to be that help. I know how much I appreciate mine, as well.

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    1. Thanks Rebecca, as a seasoned veteran I know its a phase that every parent has to go through. But man does it get harder as you get older. Wait, how did I get this old anyway? Oh well, thats life as a parent. And yes my baristas are awesome!

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  2. When I had my third, I was shocked at shocked at how much I didn't want to have that sleep deprived feeling (how did I not remember that?!) and then angry at myself that I was even contemplating how annoyed I was that I had to be sleep deprived. Poor baby didn't ask to be born! But I didn't have to go to work 9-5 after being up all night ... Yay for the Barista who "started" your day off so nicely :) But excuse me - on top of all this, you also have some energy left to compose this lovely post of thanks??? Amazing!!! Think what you'll be able to accomplish when you have baby #4.... Kidding!!!
    I hope lots of parents will share your post today with their teen boys. Perhaps with the intro, "This is the type of dad and husband I hope you'll be one day." Bravo Beau.

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    1. Thanks Kelly! I know I am not alone in my feelings about this. There are so many parents going through the same thing right now. There are also parents who can look back and smile at these times. You can't laugh a lot in the midst of it but looking back you can smile and say I remember that and I made it through! I hope this can encourage parents who are in the trenches right alongside me and also encourage those, like our baristas, who serve people like us daily!

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  3. I'm sorry you're so sleep deprived. I completely understand the love and adoration one can have for their Starbucks barista. Oh so much. I hope the new guy sleeps more soon so that you can, too!

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    1. Don't be sorry Jessie it goes along with being a parent! Thanks for the encouragement!

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  4. Hopefully you will sleep better when your child gets older!

    /madelein - motther to three girls and three boys

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    1. This too shall pass, right? I just want to keep enjoying him while he's this age.

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