Regret (verb): Used formally and in writing to express sad feelings about something that is disappointing or unpleasant (merriam-webster.com).
Mistake (noun): an action or judgment that is misguided or wrong (google.com).
Crap shoot (noun): something that is random, not based on skill. Some people think this refers to an asshole (where your crap shoots out), but it’s actually a reference to the dice-rolling game called Craps (urbandictionary.com).
Used collectively and put into a run-on sentence for purposes of this blog entry, “Although the experience of shopping with children is always a crap shoot, we decided to throw caution to the wind and give it a go, but now really regret making such an epic mistake. Like really really regret it. Really.
It was a spontaneous decision made in a weak moment. My sister and I are generally not risk takers by nature. That said, certain situations call for stepping outside of your comfort zone, like when you have to buy a costume for a very important party coming up in two weeks. “Let’s go to the mall with all of the kids!”
I am a fun person (ask my friends). I am even more fun when I can pretend to be someone other than myself for a few hours. I really like costume parties. In my humble opinion, I don’t attend and/or get invited to enough of them. In addition, I don’t get the people who attend these gatherings in regular attire, and most certainly am not going to be one of them.
“Seriously, it’s a costume party. Nice jeans. Get out.”
I have learned in my nine years as a parent that shopping with children is a gamble. Given the number of scenarios that could play out, you should go into it hoping for the best and preparing for the worst. Following is a list of possible outcomes.
- Your children actually behave like civilized human beings in public (Come again?).
- Your children behave just enough to not draw attention to themselves but not enough to avoid the very uncomfortable hand holding experience with mom on the way out of the store.
- Your children require bribes and/or treats to not act like assholes.
- Your children don’t behave. At all. Like not even a little bit, and you leave the store with nothing.
- One of your children behaves so badly that you are forced to drag him from his crisscross applesauce protest position on the floor in front of everyone, while he channels his best dead possum impression making him impossible to handle without force…so you have to use force, and have now become that mom. “You son of a bitch!” Wait a minute?
Despite the obvious threat of disaster, my sister and I had a real plan and false confidence to boot. We would take turns going into the store while the other one watched the kids in the god forsaken germ infested indoor mall playground. Everyone’s a winner. We only had to go into one store after all.
One. Damn. Store.
That’s one less than two and one more than zero (which is nothing) in case anyone’s mathematically challenged.
What we failed to enter into the equation was our absolute inability to think for ourselves when it comes to making such uber important decisions (Who doesn’t want to find the perfect costume and be immediately validated in doing so?). Upon realizing our oversight, we decided to round up the children and head in together. What’s the worst that could happen?
Although probably not the worst case scenario, I’d say it was definitely right up there on the list of SUCK.
It went something (exactly) like this…
Yelling, taunting, hitting, screaming, hiding, running, chasing, laughing (non-warranted), eye rolling (completely warranted), grabbing, crying, spitting, scolding, hugging (each other), breathing (hard), sweating, counting (to 10 multiple times in succession), all leading up to inevitable self destruction when the dice don’t land in your favor, again.
Unlike myself, my sister is the Mother Teresa of mothers. She walked out of the store carrying a disgruntled 2 year old in one arm, dragging a limp noodle of a 4 year old in the other, toting half of a mediocre costume in one hand, her purse in the other, and all the while maintaining her composure to a degree that should qualify her for sainthood given the circumstances.
I had 3 glasses of wine that night. Two for my little sister for being unbelievably awesome on so many levels, and one really big one for myself as a proactive coping measure for my next shopping adventure with my children. What can I say, I’m a planner.
“People are often unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.” –Mother Teresa.
“Children are not people. They are imposters, and thereby deserve no forgiveness for asshole behavior.” –Jill Veldhouse.