Twenty five whole months without feeling like a complete and utter fuck up. Not too shabby, AP. Not too shabby.
If you live along the Eastern Seaboard, you know that Isaac has been dropping a shit-ton of rain all up and down the coast this past week. What you may not know is when you mix three plus days of rain with one angsty cabin-fevered Toddler, you damn near get the Jekyll and Hyde of children.
We're talking Children of the Corn type crazy.
It was about the time that Carter started sprouting fangs on Monday that I knew we needed to flee. We needed to escape the confines of the house and seek out a change of scenery. It's bad enough that we're in New Jersey this week without Our Usual Billions Of Toys Of Distraction, but throw in three days of torrential downpours and I knew we were headed for Trouble City.
So, where does one turn when in need of a pick me up and a change of scenery?
Barnes and Noble, of course. The smell of books and a latte for me and a germ-infested-but-not-too-infested-like-the-one-at-the-doctor's-office train table for Carter plus a little extra room to roam seemed like the perfect cure to the Cabin Fever Crazies. An absolute win-win if I do say so myself.
Being Labor Day and all, we were also in the company of my Dad. With an extra set of hands, Carter's favorite set of hands, to be exact, what could possibly go wrong?
As Carter played diligently with the train table, refusing to share the sole choo-choo available for play with the smelly little boy whose mother also had the same bright idea as I (that's my boy!), I perused the aisles of educational toys as my Dad perused the Healthy Cooking section.
This happy little scene continued well over forty-five minutes. Just as I was patting myself on the back for a successfully orchestrated outing, Carter started playing "tag" with the smelly boy. I'd like to think he was just trying to keep his distance from The Funk but no, they were in fact playing some sort of I Chase You, You Chase Me game.
Being that the bookstore was rather empty, I let Carter continue to run haphazardly through Barnes and Noble.
Mistake number 1.
As Carter took off for the front of the store, I abandoned both my latte and my post at the head of the jogging stroller and took off after him.
Mistake number 2.
You see, toddlers are like dogs. When you chase them, they only laugh at you and run further and faster.
And that's when Carter ran behind the mile-long bank of registers at the front of the store. The mile-long bank of registers that had nearly a mile-long line of patrons impatiently waiting to check out with the pizza-faced boy behind the only functioning register.
I tried to maintain my cool. Speaking in low tones I sternly told the toddler to "FREEZE!"
And here is where it all went downhill.
If a part of his vocabulary, here is where The Toddler basically told me to "fuck off" as he figuratively flipped me the finger and continued to run to the end of the register bank. Just as I was meeting him there, he turned around as if on a dime and darted back the other way.
Behind the mile-long register bank. In front of no less than 18 people. 18 people who I had to politely excuse myself in front of as I weaved in between them trying to cut my Toddler off at the pass.
WHY THE FUCK DO THEY MAKE THOSE REGISTER BANKS SO LONG? WHY ARE THERE NO OPENINGS? FOR THE LOVE OF GOD MAKE AN OPENING!
And the velvet ropes. This isn't a goddamned movie theatre. OH THE VELVET ROPES.
Had there ever been a time when I wanted to crawl into a hole and die, this would have been it.
I could practically feel the judgy eyes burn deep into my soul. The burning judgy eyes of 18 people who could have easily stepped in to corral the Toddler as he dodged my every calculated move.
At the very least, one of those 18 could have at least stuck their leg out and tripped him up a bit. Anything to slow down the blur that was my child. The disobedient blur that was running amok behind the register bank at Barnes and Noble as I chased after him, unsuccessfully I might add.
To add insult to injury, it wasn't even I who caught up with him. It was the store manager who successfully scooped him up, further bruising my Mom-Ego as she said, "no, no, no! we don't run around in stores like this. don't you know any better?"
To which I wanted to retort, "No, you fuckhead. He doesn't know any better. If he knew better, he wouldn't be doing it. And since you seem to be the child whisperer, how about you take over mothering him for me? Clearly I'm doing a terrible job of it."
And that's the story of the day I wanted to crawl into a hole and die. But I didn't. Instead, upon immediately arriving home, I went online and googled "Kid Leash" as I uncorked a bottle of wine.
Happy Thursday, Loyals. I couldn't make this shit up if I tried.