I've learnt to be less judgemental and jump less to conclusions. Mind you, took me 3 years and 2 kids and a couple of really bad days to learn that....
It's so easy to become cocky on your good days, when everything goes according to your plan, so easy to look down on the mother that seemingly ignores her crying baby, the one that gives a treat to her kid at the supermarket, the one that says "that's it, we're going home" without giving her kids a say in the matter. Particularly when you use gentle disciplining techniques and attachment parenting, you do somehow feel entitled to be on a higher moral ground. (post for another day, us in the AP community seem so judgemental at times)
But really, you don't know what happened 5 minutes earlier. You don't know what happened the day before. Or the week before. Just because you see a mother being disconnected or not making the best choice, it doesn't mean she's a bad mother, you might just be seeing her at the end of her tether.
I've had those days, when you're just so tired, and you're feeling so lonely and unsupported and you just don't know how to turn around the day and your 3yo tells you "Mummy can you get happy again?" and that makes you even more sad.
So if you see the kids and I in a patisserie at 5pm, eating lemon curd tart or chocolate mud cake, it's not because I'm a bad mother who feeds her kids crap. It might just be because after 2 weeks of Dan being on a late shift and a full day of Sofia hurting Lucas and Lucas whinging and Sofia yelling and Lucas crying and Lucas snatching Sofia's things and it's a muggy uncomfortable day and you don't have any clothes you feel comfortable or feel yourself in and you just had to leave the house and you couldn't call anyone to look after the kids because A) no one's ever available when you just need a break B) Lucas is breastfed on demand and will not accept expressed milk C) Lucas is quite clingy, well after all this all you want is 10 minutes of peace, peace for yourself to re-find your inner balance, and peace for the kids to realise that I still love them and that I will always try to make their little world go back to normal.