One Simple Step You Can Do Today to Protect Your Identity

It was around my 38th week of pregnancy that I was persistently thinking about stocking up on food to care for my family. Once I gave birth, and really couldn’t leave home for awhile, I knew I’d need supplies for meals and daily life; Groceries, dog food, toilet paper and last minute baby purchases. I had the opportunity to drop my kids off with Grandma, and I jumped on the chance to shop alone without my 3 children at our local Wegmans. Alone, waddling and very pregnant, I was able to wander around and really enjoy shopping. I picked the perfect bananas, got some spinach and even looked up and down the organic section for new products. I passed the meat counter and went onto the long cooler section. You know the one. The section with pre-packaged meats covered in plastic wrap ready to be taken home. It was pretty full and I was waiting my turn. There were several people in front of the organic chickens and I wasn’t in a hurry. Possibly guilty of doing a little people watching.
Quickly, I noticed a younger man walking back and forth, between me and the carts waiting for their shoppers to pick out meat. I watched him eyeball an unattended cart. There was an older woman looking at steaks and it was clear she wasn’t attending to her purse, sitting in the top seat of her cart. He quickly grabbed the handlebar and started to walk off. Before I could open my mouth, she turned and said “Hey, that’s my cart!” He apologized and made some excuse about grabbing the wrong one, but it was clear that he tried to take her buggy and purse. I tapped the shoulder of the grocery worker stocking the meat section and told her what happened. Soon I saw a security officer pass by and pursue the dirtbag hanging out at the supermarket searching for someone to take advantage of. It would have been so easy for him to walk away with everything!


I think about this situation often. If there weren’t as many people, would he have walked away with this woman’s bag? Possibly this woman’s checks, credit cards, cash and driver’s license? Before she knew it…her name, address and personal accounts could be violated and in the wrong hands. Could this happen to my Mom? This made me think about my own cart, and the way I shop. Usually I’m not paying particular attention to my bag. I would cry if I lost my Timi and Leslie diaper bag/tote and everything in it! However, it’s nearly impossible to keep both eyes on my family, shop for groceries and multitask. I need to take the bag with me, walking in without diapers and other kid needs is impossible…but how do I keep my identity and my family safe?

When possible, I make good use of the shopping cart seatbelt! Every try to get one of these off? They’re not for the weak-of-hands…or stomach. Often full of goodies other children have left behind; crackers, drool and maybe even a diaper surprise, these puppies really need to be squeezed open. I close my purse (so no creeping hands can sneak in) and lock my purse in place. Is it possible to still be stolen? Yes. Is it much much more difficult? Absolutely! With baby in our baby carrier (and a free top seat) I’m usually worried about him and picking out produce…not criminals. While this may not be ideal for someone who needs to use the seat, I’m sure many will find this a great option. Taking this one simple step helps protect my identity, my stuff and of course…my cloth diapers! Some of those are $20-$30 each and sitting pretty in our cloth diaper bag. Next time you go grocery shopping, secure your bag and secure your identity!


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