Friday, February 15, 2008

There is no such thing as a "quick stop" with kids

The King needed a prescription filled today, and we were out of milk. In an apparent moment of weakness, I decided I could run to Target with my three youngest kids in toe, pick up the items, and be on my way home. It shouldn't have taken more than just five minutes to get in and out. Well, that's what I thought. Ha!

After driving all over the parking lot just trying to find one spot that was somewhere near a buggy parking spot and within the same zipcode as the entrance of the store, I finally managed to park my rather large mini-van in the very small parking spot right by the shopping carts. It actually wasn't that small of a spot, but the blind person next to me thought it would be a nice touch if he or she took up two parking spots instead of one.

I finally got out of the car after sucking in and holding my breath to make myself small enough to shimmy in between my van and the vehicle next to me. With about a hundred carts parked in the buggy lot, I was sure today was my lucky day. I should be able to load my kids in and be on my way. Again, not so. How is it possible that 99.9 carts out of 100 all have broken seat belts? Are there toddlers sitting in those buggies with box cutters? I had to go through about fifty carts before finding one with a belt that Pretty couldn't get out of. It wasn't a moment too soon, either, because I REALLY had to go to the bathroom. I love that Target has the family restroom so I can just take all the kids and the buggy in with me.

I high tailed it to the bathroom, and found some funny-lookin' kid standing outside it. I asked if someone was in there, and he informed me that his mother was. I said I'd wait. He explained, completely straight-faced, that she'd be in there for a while. I was sure he had to be kidding. The women's room was totally empty, and this woman could have gone in there. But, no. That would have required an ounce of courtesy. The kid knocked on the door and told his mom people were waiting. "Tell them I'll be a while". He turned to tell me what his mom's response was (as if I didn't hear it myself), and decided to play with the Beast a little. Just as he did that, he looked up at me and said, "I'm home from school today because I'm real sick. Just look at me. Can you see my eyes? They have sick written all over them." Great. I needed someone really sick to breathe all over my kids.

I gave up on waiting for the woman who was apparently giving birth in the restroom as that was the only thing she could be doing in there that would take so much time. I gathered up all three of my little ones, and carried them into the ladies' restroom, which was now crowded. I was delighted, though, that the Beast was kind enough to give a very loud play by play of everything I was doing in the bathroom. My personal favorite was the part where he announced, "Something is coming out of your butt, Mommy". Ummmm....I don't even know how to respond to that. It was also delightful when I was bent over wiping and the Beast decided that it was a great time to go ahead and open the door, allowing Pretty to roam free while at the same time permitting all the other restroom patrons to see me in all my painful glory.

After enduring that humiliation, I gathered my little angels and headed out to my buggy. To my delightful surprise, the woman in the family restroom had come out and taken my shopping cart with her. (I guess I can't say I know for sure that it was her, but it makes the story better to assume it was). I found another cart, loaded the kids into it, and was on my way. As luck would have it, I got the buggy with the messed up wheel. Usually I get the one that has a wheel that spins uncontrollably or the one with something stuck in on one wheel so that it won't move. On really great days, I get one with both the spinning and the stuck wheel. That's a real treasure. Today, though, I got the real cream of the crop. I got the buggy that was so out of alignment that it felt like it was tipping over with every step I took. But, it did have a decent seat belt. So, I had a choice to make. Do I get the buggy that keeps Pretty safely strapped in, but might tip over at any moment sending my precious cargo flying into oblivion or do I choose the one that Pretty can stand up in,but would more than likely fall head-first out of? I settled for the one that was going to tip over any second.

I hurriedly gathered my few items, and high-tailed it out of there. Well, as fast as one can high-tail with a tipping buggy, a four year old with the urge to touch everything in their path, and no room in the cart because the baby's carseat is in there. This is always a delightful scenario when you add in the fact that every geriatric person from here to Bangladesh was in the store and staring at me with that look that sort of reads, "Ugh! Look what the world has come to. That woman has no control over her children. Back in my day, I raised three dozen children outdoors in the snow, and we hiked uphill both ways to the local egg market four times a day".

I finally headed out to the car where I delighted in trying to reload my children without letting the buggy roll away taking my kids with it and braving the elements. I did succeed in preventing the Beast from running out into oncoming traffic about twenty times while still trying to keep the buggy upright and Snort's blanket from blowing away.

So, my "quick stop" ended up lasting closer to an hour and felt more like four. On the upside, though, I did get a lovely reminder NEVER to go to the store with my children ever again.

9 comments:

~moon said...

omg, aimee! :) you are too flippin funny! i must read more!

AimeeTheSuperMom said...

Read all you like! My kids are like birth control for the rest of the world.

Dawnyel said...

Okay, so I'm trying NOT to laugh....but I can't help it! I know, someday that will be me, but until then, I will enjoy my bliss with ONE child!

heidi and tom said...

thanks for making my trip to Target seem like a walk in the park. You're a real treasure EE! love you!

Amy said...

hilarious!! And I've had almost the identical experience at target with three kids in tow, and pg with #4..oh the looks!!

~V~ said...

WOW!! WOW!! I am at a loss of words on this post. HAHAHHAHAA!

Rachelle said...

I love your writing! YOu make me crack up.

~e said...

Oh Aimee....

Zippy & the Wild Bunch said...

I don't know you, but you are truly a talented writer. I have enjoyed and empathized/sympathized with your adventures (although I only have three "helpers")and wish you all the best. Keep on bloggin' girl! You are keeping me sane.