Ever have one of those days? Yeah, that would be today.
We have a vacation planned for next week. It’ll be our first as a family of six and, being the wise travel agent I am, I booked our tickets for 6:45 am Sunday morning. It made sense in my mind because we’d be landing around ten, leaving us the entire day to bask in everything the Caribbean has to offer. Then stupid Facebook told me there was going to be a snowstorm hitting our area. I’m normally not one to fall for weather forecasts, but — knowing that it was supposed to be snowing when we were planning on leaving — I was a little apprehensive. I began imagining waking up at 3:00am, getting to the airport and sitting at the gate only to be delayed followed by sitting on the plane while waiting to be deiced. And that was when what the heck was I thinking sank in. I tried changing tickets but the fees were astronomical and the agent told me to wait a day. I was also picturing black ice on the roads and suddenly my stomach was upset.
I didn’t sleep well that night. I tossed and turned; I played Sim City. After watching my city struggle to survive without water and proper healthcare, I ultimately moved to the couch and obsessively checked flights, watching the fares go higher and higher. When I’d had enough of that, I had some cereal and chocolate milk and fell asleep at 5:30.
When I woke up around seven, I went to check the status on some credit card transactions. I realized that I had screwed up and paid a bill twice, which overdrew one of my accounts to pay another, somehow rendering both accounts completely useless. I called both companies and they both told me it would all straighten in 7-10 business days. That doesn’t bode well for travel or grocery shopping. I’m pretty sure it was my error, but it left me feeling almost as stressed as the time I didn’t have a phone for 18 hours
. My stomach was upset from this, and because I was still sporting some spoiled milk residue in my mouth from some snacks a few hours prior.
First to wake up was Judah at around 7:25. He was in a really sweet and playful mood and, being that he’s not a morning person, it was certainly welcome. He played super nicely as the rest of the crew woke up one at a time. Lisi immediately crawled into our bed and stayed there for an extended period, so I just left her and took Annie and Judah to school. Judah is going through this adorable phase where he stretches himself out on the floor in protest and just lies there. He’s incredibly stubborn. He’ll lie there until I physically pick him up; it’s just so darn cute. It’s especially precious when — like this morning — he lies down on the side of the street, literally on the pavement next to a garbage can, whimpering because he wanted to press door close in the elevator. The problem was that it took him a little too long and, bless the guy, he’s such a weakling his push wasn’t strong enough so the door just closed on its own. He was pretty worked up about it and I happened to be in a rush. When I realized I couldn’t physically drag him to school, I brought him back inside of our building where he stretched himself out on the lobby floor. Poor Annie had been happily skipping alongside with her shoes on the wrong feet and a blue ring around her mouth from the chocolate covered pretzel with blue sugar crystals I had let her have for breakfast. In total frustration and without thinking, I forcefully picked up Judah to standing position. He slumped down. That’s how you wanna play? I could feel my face turning red because I was stressed and angry at him so I picked him up again, put him in the elevator and pressed our floor. He sat down in the elevator and let the door close. Annie started yelling at me not to do it and then the mommy guilt kicked in. As I ran up the steps I heard our door slam. He’d let himself in and was stretched out on the couch.
I left Judah there, dropped Annie off at school and came home to find Lisi cuddling with Craig. She got dressed, declined breakfast and I did round two of drop offs with Judah and Lisi. Judah cried most of the way and had to be restrained by a teacher when I left. I just left him and didn’t feel so bad because I was still worked up.
Lisi, who seemed to think that screaming Judah was the most hilarious thing she’s ever witnessed, was acting a little off. After doing the math, I realized that she was probably coming down with something and gave her teachers a head’s up and went on my way. Craig took Baby to back-up daycare at his work and, because my credit cards weren’t working, he gave me some cash (Jetson style). I had to stand there doing math in my head most of the day whenever I wanted to make a purchase. It felt so 1990s. I kept thinking about the storm, our trip, my cash situation, sad Judah, sick Lisi and potentially traumatized Annie.
I ran some errands and picked up Baby from daycare. I saw a 40%-off sale at Anthropologie and knew it would be criminal not to go in, plus I had a store credit — or as Craig calls it, magic money. As I’m standing in line I get a call from school. Lisi took a nap, didn’t touch her lunch and was burning up. She was sick. So I hopped on the next train home.
It was one of those rides where as the train pulls in you think sweet, there are seats and after sitting down you realize exactly why. Homeless man. He was blind, really racist and really stank. There was no way out and I had a seat so I stayed put. I’m pretty sure that the smell will never come out of my coat.
When I was finally reunited with my kids I sat them in front of some toys and called the airline. Two hours and 42 minutes later we were on a new flight, free of charge. I fed the kids and cuddled with them in bed. Even Lisi was there, radiating fever onto the rest of us keeping us warm. They got to stay up later than usual since I was too burned out to fight them. We were lying there when Judah yelled excuse me! Annie and I looked other and starting laughing. Judah announced I said ‘excuse me’ because I just farted. And that was the end of that.
* * *
I consider myself very patient, calm and chillaxed. I’ve spent the last five years training myself, so it’s certainly something I take pride in. I’ve definitely worked hard at it but yeah, today was one of those days when I lost it. In retrospect I feel a little bad; I keep playing the morning over in my head wondering what if the elevator got stuck. When Judah came home I asked him if he remembered what happened on the way to school this morning and he said — I made a pee pee and then a poop but I didn’t flush. And then he turned back to his iPad.