Sunday, May 1, 2011

That CAN"T be MY kid!!

Senia Mae is at the stage of almost talking. Because she is a girl, and girls supposedly are more verbal at an early age, the sound escaping her lips is expansive jibberish in high and low tones, ok more high than low, that ends up becoming complete conversations with herself or incomprehensive, frustrated conversations with us. Most of the time I find it absolutely hilarious, until today when I frantically searched for the mute button on the child as I stood in the grocery isle, contemplating how to stop up the foghorn better know as my daughter, whose pitch was about to break the glass on the store shelves.

Let me regress. It had been an off day, we were aware that she was not completely herself, and a certain level of crankiness was semi-present, but of tolerable adequacy. The downward spiral began in the car when cookie monster's hard plastic eye bumped into her face as I tossed it playfully at her. Her look said "How could you do this to me?" as her jaw quivered in the calm before the eruptive storm of tears that followed a split second later. Anyone who has been around young children knows this routine, the magnitude is such that the tears take a moment or two to actually rise to the surface. I stifled my laughter as I drowned her with my sincerest apologies, knowing that her reaction was mostly dramatics and tiredness.

After a full day of half finished tasks and what seemed like driving around in circles, Kim and I decided that we needed some "Cheese therapy" and headed to our favorite Mexican restaurant. The outside seating seemed appropriate for our piping little fledgling, since the patio was empty. We thought we could get in and out virtually unscathed, until the group of twelve baseball kids arrived at the table across from us.

Our little one could not fathom why all of those kids were not stumbling all over her with affections and she was going to let them know it! She was letting them have it, waving her hands while spouting her thoughts, as they sat with their backs to her digging into their individual bowls of cheese dip. Finally one of the mothers laughed, observing her emotional display, asking the children to turn around and acknowledge the little girl across the way who desperately wanted to be part of the team. They all cooed and smiled, waving at Senia Mae, as she soaked up every last morsel of juvenile attention available.

Eventually we broke away from the excitement of the restaurant, deciding to walk over to the neighboring grocery store to pick up a few items. As we entered the baby needs aisle, Kim mentioned that she needed to visit the restroom and would be back in a moment. During that time Senia Mae and I could breeze down the aisle, grab what we needed and be ready to go when Kim got back.

Well this was a new store and there many new options including organics, some with essential oils as well as zinc oxide, a few brands from California which had to be superior because they are just so aware on that side of the country....needless to say I was not as decisive as I could have been and Senia Mae started letting me have it. At first I appeased her by lettting her hold the Burt's Bee's box. That lasted for a total of three seconds as she dropped it, flailing her arms and talking loudly in angry jibberish, enjoying the loud echo that followed her squeals. I tried to hush her as another mother walked by holding her toddler's hand, thankful that her's was much better behaved in a public place, as I thought to myself, "What is taking Kim so long?".

We paced the aisle a few more times, grabbing a few toys as we went, my brain completely denying my obvious embarassment as I read ingredient labels, determined to purchase only the best for my firstborn. After what seemed like fifteen minutes of trying to contain an erupting verbal volcano strapped to the front of my body while repeatedly scanning a very small, specific section of the baby aisle, Kim finally returned from what seemed like the other side of the earth. I looked at her in desperation.

"While we are here do you want to pick out a few Mother's Day cards?", she happily asked. I was ready to toss over the kid and hide somewhere in a close by trashbarrel. No, this was not a not a good time to skim over the greeting cards for that perfect little something. Senia Mae's outburst had three mothers leaving the aisle talking under their breath. I was frazzled and somewhat mortified, she was usually an exemplary example of good behavior.

After you've been together a while words aren't as necessary to get your point across. Obviously my expression said that I was ready to get the heck out of the store as we quickly headed to the checkout.

Once we got back in the car and drowned out Senia Mae's noises with Justin Bieber, I asked Kim what took her so long. She explained that she had to use the restroom, but it was one of those times that you had to be completely relaxed. The task was hard to accomplish with the sound of that kid's scream resonating all the way behind the closed door of the restroom. "It almost sounded like Senia Mae" she commented. "It was Senia Mae. That's why I was so embarrassed! There was nothing I could do to get her to stop screaming. As you were in there dealing with yourself I examined every ingredient in ALL of the butt pastes. Sounds like you could have used some!"

"That's why you were apologizing to the checkout lady", Kim commented with a smile. We drove home in complete hysterics, knowing full well that this episode was just the very beginning of what awaits us during the crazy journey of life called parenthood!
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