Every now and again, we, parents, have one of “those” nights…. Those nights that test your patience… Those nights that test your skill… And those nights that tug at your heartstrings…
Last night, I had one of those nights. Yes. All of the above.
At some point in the late afternoon, I got a call from my babysitter “Ash-a-Wee” saying she had an emergency and if it was okay, she needed the evening off. This meant that she wouldn’t be able to pick up Baby-Ko from day care at 4:30pm. Just to preface, day care closes at 5:30 on the dot but Ash-a-Wee picks Baby-Ko up M-F at 4:30 or earlier. She’s never been a second late and he is usually the first child to leave… In fact, I’m pretty sure he gives a little “see ya suckas” wave when he closes the gate behind him, keeping his little 3 foot friends captive until their peeps come to save them… But I digress….
At 5:20 my cell rang. Shit. I was sitting in traffic and it was day care calling to let me know Baby-Ko was hysterical. I completely forgot to call them to tell them that A-A-Wee wasn’t coming (I was). Bad mommy move. BAD. They told me they took him inside the house because watching the other children leave (mind you, it’s 5:20pm so it’s DARK out and he leaves when it’s light) was making him too upset. To make matters even worse, his caretakers Margarita and Dora were leaving for the night too. OMG! Now he’s sitting there with A & H (the couple that runs the day care out of their house) as he watches the people that take care of him leave???? Poor baby! He must be so scared.
Panicked and feeling so awful I finally came to a halt in front of their house at 5:40. As I ran up the porch, the front door opened and Baby-Ko came flying out.
“Mommmmmmmmy!!!” He sobbed. He couldn’t catch his breath. “Ash-a-wee didn’t come. I cryyyyyyyyyyyyyyy.”
“I’m soooooo sorry baby,” I said hugging him tightly. “Mommy is here now. I’m sooooooooo sorry.”
“Dora lef-a-me. I cryyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy.”
“Dora went home too? Oh, Baby-Ko. I’m so sorry. These things happen. But mommy always comes back. I ALWAYS come back.”
Clutching him, I picked up his bags and carried him to the car. How in the world can I make this better??? What can I do to let him know it’s okay??? WILL HE EVER FORGIVE ME???
A light bulb, that I didn’t even know was inside me, went OFF:
“Baby-Ko, do you want to go to McDonalds?” WHAT? Did I just say that?
“Yeaaaaaaaaaah, ” he said sniffling. “I want fwench fwies.”
“Okay, my love,” I said shocked by what I had said. “Let mommy put you in the car and let’s go get french fries. And cheeseburgers.”
WHO AM I? For those of you that personally know me, you know that I eat fast food (not including Taco Bell… OR the requisite airport Egg McMuffin) like every blue moon. Emotional I am, yes. An eater I am, yes. An EMOTIONAL EATER: I am NOT.
But here I was. Now standing at the counter inside (a very lovely remodeled McDonald’s if I do say so myself) redirecting my son from what was clearly an emotionally draining and traumatic experience to a land where feelings are forgotten because the value meals are just too good to pass up.
“One happy meal, please–“
“I crrrrrrrrrrryy,” Baby-Ko said. “Mommy was late.” GUILT.
“Ooh, how about some ice cream?” BRIBE.
“Yeahhhh, I want it,” he said resting his head on my shoulder.
“Okay, one hot fudge sundae please….” I said to the cashier.
“I want a cookie. A COOOOOOOKIEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!” Baby-Ko said practically leaping out of my arms towards the cookie case on the counter.
“Okaaay. One chocolate chip cookie…” SUCKER.
“THAT cookie,” Baby-Ko pointed. “DAT ONE.”
The cashier smile and obliged. “Okay, that one. Anything else?”
“Um… Yeah…. I’ll take a medium french fry….”
AND THERE IT WAS.
THIS IS THE REASON. THIS is how IT starts. THIS is what the “experts” are talking about. (Experts that IIIIIIIIIIIII write about!)
Seriously though, is this how obesity starts for both children and their guilt/ exhaust ridden mommies? If so, someone send me the applications now for Biggest Loser season 46. Baby-Ko and I can be a team…
24 Hours later, Baby-Ko seems to be okay from the entire experience. Me on the other hand… I’m still feeling the trauma of it all…. ANNNNNNND trying to tell myself that at the very least, giving him BROCCOLI with his happy meal was one way to make IT stop….