No, this is not about why I stay home as opposed to going to work, so don't look forward to a feel-good entry. In fact, if you don't want to read about toddler drama and mother venting, I suggest you stop now. ;)
Buster really needed some new shoes. Ben just got paid, so I decided today was a good day to go to the shoe store. We got there, and Buster started throwing a tantrum because we forgot to bring his water bottle. I tried to give him a cup leftover from dinner last night, but he wouldn't take it. I managed to settle him down, and as we strolled across the parking lot, I was feeling pretty good about myself. "Wow," I thought, "two kids isn't so hard. Hey, they both fit in the stroller! I've learned a lot this summer about just getting out and doing stuff. Crazy that it took me 5 kids to get to this point."
We got to the store. Buster didn't want his shoes off. He wasn't sure about the whole foot-measuring process, and he liked the pink girl shoes. The salesman came out with some cool new red and black shoes with velcro (yay!) . He didn't want to put them on. Then we got them on him, and liked them. He liked them so much that he wanted to wear them outside. Off he ran, right out the front door. I stuck him back in the stroller and bought the shoes.
As we left the store, he wanted to walk in his new shoes. We were in the middle of a big parking lot, though, so I wouldn't let him. The tears began again. We got to the car, and Abel cried about getting into his carseat. I realized he had a stinky diaper, so I pulled him out to change him. (One of my laments about my big green van is that it doesn't have a great place for changing diapers on the go.) I started to change him and realized he needed new clothes, too. Meanwhile, Buster found the cup I had offered him earlier. He finished it off and started begging for more water repeatedly. He even dripped a few drops of water onto his brother. Abel was wriggling like crazy during the whole change, and Buster kept begging. I finally got Abel dressed, and Buster dropped his straw and lid right onto the dirty changing pad. Grrrr... I got Abel back in his carseat, and he started to cry. I strapped Buster in, already crying and still begging for a drink. I put the stroller in the car. At this point, I saw the mother in the car behind me. "This is why I stay home, " I said.
"Do you have twins in there?" she asked.
"No, just a 9-month-old and a 2-year-old, and they're both crying."
"That's almost the same thing," the sympathetic mother responded.
Anyway, I got in the car and gave Abel his pacifier. He, at least, settled down. I then told Buster I was going to Wendy's. "Would you like ice cream or a drink?" I asked. He replied that he would like a drink. I went and bought myself a Frosty and got a free water for him. He was very content. We drove home, and I marveled at how stubborn a toddler can be. He was so stuck on the drink that he didn't even consider ice cream. We got home, and I asked what he wanted for lunch. Can you guess? "Ice cream," came the response.
We were only gone for about 45 minutes, but it seemed a lot longer. As I told that other mother: Now I remember why I stay home almost every day.