For some unearthly reason, I thought doing crafts today was a good idea. When I went to get the goods out for creative mess-making, we were out of painting/fingerpainting paper. That should have been a red-light, but I obliviously plowed on, and began getting the Terrorists ready for a trip to the craft store.
After half-an-hour of looking for shoes and finally, tearfully, settling on sandals- because finding four shoes is five times as difficult as two shoes- I went to grab Abby and put her in her baby-bucket. She had mustard-seed poo all the way up her back- I’m still not used to the way girls fill their diapers as opposed to boys; way more up-the-back stuff. After changing her, the bed and her changing table, I get her in carseat and grab my purse. Now where are the boys?
In their room, like little boys, banging holes in the solid stained-wood trim around their closet and built-ins. Seriously, holes, like 150 of them, the size of say, of a propeller tip on a die-cast metal WWII replica airplane? Yes, that would about cover it. The world doesn’t leave me speechless very often, but here I was, standing on the precipice of either going insane, or going mute. What to do? What to do? Hmmmm, I think this is a job for- what do you mean there is no Superman??! Egad, what to do? I know! I will make the four-year old call dad at work and fess up! As I have said before, I am not above passing one off to the old man.
After Jeffrey fesses up to dad what he did, dad and I converse privately about what to do. No park today, but go ahead and run errands as planned, then institute martial law upon return home. Okey dokey. We will deal with fixing the holes later as a family. Sounds fun, doesn’t it?
Everyone in the car! Hooray, off to the craft store! Get three kids four-and-under buckled in various seats of various safety ratings, (does the DOT have it in for mothers of multiple young kids, or what??) and zoom off down the street. When I arrive at the craft store, I have forgotten that Toys R Us is not only in the same complex, but right next door to the Craft Store. Deciding to use it as a bargaining chip, I bribe them with a trek though the Giraffe if they behave in the craft store. It works well, actually. The craft store is the easiest part of the day, and I get various papers and paints and fun stuff with relative ease.
On to the Giraffe. Oh, I know, I’m not a rookie- but my brain isn’t fully engaged yet, or I’m still riding the Giant Hormone or whatever, but I did it anyway. Yeah, it went about as well as you’re thinking. Getting back in the car, two of them were crying and the Voracious One was sleeping- two for three, not bad.
On the way out of the parking lot, Jeffrey is crying like the world is ending, and Eric is doing his best imitation of an air raid siren. Jeffrey decides to start throwing poison darts, and begins with the the “You’re not my mom anymore!” garbage.
Then, the zinger- “I don’t love you anymore mom!” and for some wacky reason, my eyes fill with tears. Where do they get this crap? He has never heard anything remotely like that at home, so where’s it come from? Do kids know what they do to their parents? Do they know what their parents do for them? Do they have any idea what their careless words do to our hearts?? Now, I realize these were angry words from a worked up little kid, and I did not let him see a rise out of me, but it still got me thinking… As much as I could with the Air Raid Siren going off anyway.
Here is me, bouncing down the road in my Suburban mom-mobile, the picture of domestic happiness and bliss, and I see a McDonald’s- and I am hungry. Rrrrrrrrrrrt. Screech into the driveway and the best mom invention ever, the drivethrough. Order the meal of champions, Large Fries and a Diet Coke. Mmmmmm. Nothing for the kiddies, bwah-ha-ha-ha (just kidding), but they don’t know that. Back on the road, I am stuffing French fries down my throat as fast as I can, and I realize there is a little bit of emotional eating going on. Ya think?? It occurs to me that I may gain all the weight I barfed up with Abby if I don’t do something- all the while the Air Raid Siren is still going off, and Poison Dart Man is still flinging arrows. Another French fry? Don’t mind if I do! Almost home…
At home, the Air Raid Siren goes silent due to influx of French fries, Dart Man puts a sock in it (or, rather, a bite of cheeseburger), and I send him to serve his previously agreed upon time-out. And thus Dart Man resurfaces. I give him a few minutes, but after about 5, my patience wears out and my “other” feelings bubble to the surface like slow, blopping La Brea Tar bubbles. Enough is enough. I grab the bottle of vinegar from the kitchen cabinet and make a b-line for the Dart Man’s hole-riddled bedroom. He can tell my the look in my eye that I’m all business now. He clams up and doesn’t say another word, and I leave the bottle of vinegar on his nightstand as a “gentle reminder” not to talk until dad gets home.
I’m hiding downstairs. Abby is stuffed with milk and snoozing on the guest bed across the room as I write this, and Eric is happily watching Zooboomafoo with no one picking on him or trying to take his chair, his crackers or his sense of self. Dad ought to be home any minute.
Like I said, any mom, anywhere, on any given day, could have had this day. Today, it was my turn. How long before the wheel spins my way again? Anyone’s guess. But I’ll be out of town that day.