On Friday evening, I really wanted to order a pizza for dinner. There was no food in the pantry and after a long day of work, the last thing I wanted to do was get in the car again and take two hungry kids to the store.
So, I went to Firetrail Pizza’s website to find their delivery number. From their name alone, I should have known better. I was disconnected and rerouted twice before someone answered the phone. Apparently, the number online was for a brewery, not a pizza joint. It was then that I should have recognized the gift the universe was giving me. A beer. But, I was hungry…
I’m ordering a pear-gorgonzola pizza and my daughter, Bee, starts crying. I pick her up. She stops. I put her down. She screams. The person on the phone was annoyed. I really wanted pizza, so I barricaded myself in the master bedroom to finish ordering. I felt like a caged animal. I was afraid I ordered something awful, like olives. I hate olives.
Twenty minutes turned into forty minutes and forty minutes became an hour. My family became hangier and hangier. I tapped my fingers on the counter. I clicked my shoe on the tile. Finally, I called the delivery driver. The delivery driver didn’t have any record of my order. It was already bedtime and I needed to figure something out fast, or I might have lost my eardrums.
I placed a new order for Thai Food. A very frank Yelp review about pizza was in my future. We ate nearly three hours after my first phone call.
Where is my dinner? Let’s be real, I’ll just have wine tonight. I could have sworn my glass was right here. I guess it could always be worse.
On Saturday, my grumpy, teething toddler decided to eat our morning routine for breakfast instead of the actual food I made for her. She clung to me with the strength of Hercules and sobbed in my ear. I really needed more coffee. Coffee and silence.
My five-year-old, Haddie, sat on maple syrup while in her ballet leotard, and we were late to dance class. She didn’t change and her bum had a nice, brown stain.
My daughter arrived 15 minutes late to class, opened her dance bag and discovered she didn’t have her tap shoes. The show must go on.
She danced. Sticky and tap-less, I snuck off to the coffee shop down the street with my toddler to get a damn latte.
At the cafe counter, I set my daughter by my feet and ordered.
The fabulous barista began to work her magic, making my latte. I slid my credit card in the chip reader to pay, taking a sip of the latte. The cashier looked at me. “Your card is declined,” she said.
I tried my debit card, ensuring its success with a silent prayer. I need this fricking coffee because between last night and today, this weekend sucks. My paycheck had been deposited on Friday. There should be no reason for my card to be declined.
Sighing, I stepped to the side to call my bank, my eye on the latte. Bee began tugging on my pant leg. Tears rolled down her cheeks. Phone to ear, I turned to reason with my daughter. My keys and credit card jumped out of my hand and tumbled to the ground. I thought about joining them, maybe having a tantrum that the cashier could see would only be soothed by coffee. I bent down to collect my daughter and my scattered belongings when I heard a rip and felt a sudden chill on my backside. The full coffeeshop of people behind me had a full view of my floral underwear. Floral fly flying, I wasn’t going to leave without my coffee. I scooted my bum to the wall and made for the latte, imagining Haddie’s face as she waited for her now-late mama to pick her up.
I should have stopped while I was ahead and locked myself into the house. But, the show must go on.
That afternoon we had plans to attend a swim lesson and a birthday party. At the pool, Haddie decided not to listen to the teacher who finally told her to get out of the pool. I watched my daughter sitting on a ledge not learning how to swim and thought about how my money was flying away—poof.
My good girl, Haddie, apologized to her swim teacher and finished her swim lesson. We walked outside into the sunshine. Maybe everything was back on track.
After swim lessons, we roamed Target to find a birthday present. We hopped back into the car and set our GPS for the birthday party.
Lucy’s house was empty. We knocked. We rang the bell. We stood on the porch wondering why there were so many construction workers there. A construction worker popped his head out of the buzzing house to tell us Lucy and her family weren’t home.
Wrong birthday party. Wrong day. I wanted to cry. Bee babbled, whined, her voice screeching toward a wail because she needed a nap. The birthday party we were invited to was at least 20 minutes away. We could still make it. I didn’t know any of the parents, and nobody was expecting me, but that’s besides the point…
I didn’t ask for this weekend. I couldn’t give two hoots if Mercury was in retrograde. It was an opportunity to redeem myself, change my luck, be the mom boss I’ve always dreamed about. We were 35-minutes late to Jake’s birthday party, but we could still make it. We swooped into Safeway to get Jake a present.
That’s when Haddie disappeared. She was next to me one second, and then poof, she was gone. I searched aisle after aisle, increasingly frantic, calling her name while Bee snaked her way through the seat belt and tried to escape the shopping cart seat. I imagined my daughter kidnapped or wandering into parking lot traffic. Heart thudding against my ribs, I knew I could never forgive myself.
Ten minutes later, I returned to the candy aisle and she walked up behind me with a book in her hands, as though nothing had happened.
Furious, I gave my daughter a good talking to, purchased the gift, and got us all in the car. By the time we got to the party, we were nearly two hours late. I still don’t know why I thought we should go or what I was trying to save. Oh, did I mention it was a Halloween themed party? We stood out like a sore thumb. Social anxiety at its finest.
On Sunday, I took Haddie to the correct birthday party. We actually showed up with the correct gift. It was 90 degrees and Bee looked like she was melting. Instead she had a meltdown and attached herself to the floor. We left early.
There were still no groceries at the house. We drove home to grab grocery bags, but Bee fell asleep in the car. I carried her to her bedroom where she took a three-hour nap while my stomach growled. I was hungry.
When my grumpy toddler woke up, I tried to put her in the car to go get groceries. She refused. She had a tantrum in the driveway instead. I thought about having a tantrum, too.
On Monday, I dropped my daughter at dance camp, counting my blessings. Number one: At least she didn’t have a brown stain on her butt today. I walked back to my car, tugged on the handle—it was locked. I left my keys in Haddie’s dance bag.
I had to go back into the building and interrupt her class. Twenty pairs of eyeballs starred as I rummaged through her bag to grab my car keys and run back out of the classroom. As fast as I could, I got in the car and drove away. I didn’t want to be late for work.
That is when I realized that I left my phone in her dance bag too. Maybe I needed another cup of coffee. My head felt groggy. Or scrambled eggs? Man, this is a terrible case of the Mondays. I’ll get my phone later.
A few hours passed, and after a work meeting, I picked up my daughter to drop her at daycare. She changed quickly in the backseat and I set my phone on top of the car. That was a big mistake.
As I drove away, I heard a big SWISH and a THUNK. It wasn’t until I got to the office that I realized what that noise was. My phone was homeless, living somewhere on the streets of Petaluma.
Petaluma, I hope you enjoy that expensive gift. You must have needed it more than me. It could always be worse… at least you didn’t take my wine. Or my latte.