Can a good mum just forget her baby?
We’ve all left something behind in the supermarket, haven’t we?
A bag of shopping.
A credit card?
But this woman left a little more than that. She left her baby.
Cherish Peterson, 27, has become more than just a forgetful mother: she has now become a hashtag and the focus of an international debate about mum-shaming and about the phenomenon of the “perfect parent.”
Peterson, from Gilbert in the US, has appeared on national TV overnight breaking down when she recounted the incident.
“I’m a good mom who made a horrible mistake,” she said.
She said she was rushing out of an Arizona supermarket on Monday, bustling three of her four children around in the shopping trolley, when the incident occurred.
“I got into my car, and normally I put my cart away,” she told KPHO.
“But I didn’t need to because I parked at the front of the store and I never park there. And I drove away.”
Unbeknownst to her, she took off with only two of the three kids she had along for the trip in the car.
Her two-month old baby son Huxton was safely secured in his car seat — but in the shopping trolley out the front of the supermarket, not in the back seat of the car.
An off-duty police officer saw the infant almost immediately and took him to a nearby hairdresser.
And of course, each and very iPhone in the salon snapped a pic of the “abandoned bub” and uploaded it to social media.
Ms Peterson, meanwhile, had arrived home only to be reprimanded by her three-year old.
“As I was pulling into the garage, my three-year-old goes, ‘where’s baby Huxton’?'” Mrs Peterson said. “His car seat is right behind me. I turned around and realised it was gone.”
Many media reports claim that this “loving mother” then returned within 40 minutes. Other media reports say the “forgetful mom” took over two hours to return to her baby.
Whatever the exact timeframe, Mrs Peterson told KPHO it was lengthy.
“It was still a long time,” Mrs Peterson admits. “It was still 40 minutes. It was not two hours. And I never took my other kids out of the car, so it wasn’t like I knew I left him. I thought the whole time he was in my car.”