Life is full of ups and downs. We all know this, we're living it.
Currently in my life I've only got a few things on my plate: an ill parent, husband starting his own business and me becoming the sole breadwinner on a nonprofit executive salary (WTF were we thinking??!!), eldest child entering high school (when the F did I get old enough to have a high school student living in and messing up my house?), my elder bro-turkey and his genetic offspring are relocating to my town so I'm pitching in to help out during the transition because of said ill parent requiring other parent to be super busy, and also, I have a job.
I might be fired? I'm not sure yet, haven't been there much. Staff assures me things are running fine without me, that's either good or bad depending on how you look at it.
I'm barely half-assing any aspect of my life (Ron Swanson would not approve) so I'm almost always on auto-pilot which doesn't bode well for my driving abilities - cars beware, there's an incredibly harried, over-stressed, emotional hot mess piloting a large SUV around town. Oh wait, that describes basically almost any mom. Touche.
But I digress. As usual.
Last night said parent needed to be taken to the emergency room which meant I got to take my older brother to the airport leaving me with his precocious and very adorable 8 year old human.
Now, this child is incredibly smart and funny and wise beyond her years. Yet, when she gets her mind rolling on something, it's hard to derail it. Like basically impossible. From constant conversations about hatchimals to kitty cats you can sometimes never get a word in edge-wise. More on this shortly.
As you might imagine one parent taking the other to the hospital meant my evening unraveled a bit like a ball of yarn in the care of a feral kitten on catnip trapped in a bathtub full of water. This was a good thing in the sense that I was able to rescue my high school child from having to sit outside of her school for two hours during parent meetings about sports (and telling us to donate what little cash we have left to their programs....hoping the jar of coins on my husband's dresser will suffice).....
It also meant rescuing one of her best friends, a 14 year old boy who lives down the street and whose parents are dear friends of ours. (I offered for the record because his mom is as busy as I am!)
Again, just laying the ground work here folks. The 14 year old friend (we will refer to him as Carpool Kid to protect his anonymity) was placed in the back seat with a very chatty 8 year old girl possessing no verbal filter whatsoever.
I really have to go deep in the weeds here to really set this whole situation up.
My 14 year old daughter was still only wearing a sports bra after cross country, mind you I warned her like 80 times that Carpool Kid was riding with us and for the love of GOD and all that is good and holy put ON your shirt. A 14 year old boy (friend or not) doesn't need to see you in a BRA. Er. Mah. Gerd. Turns out the sports bra was the LEAST of my concern this fine evening....
Eventually I convinced the girl to put "a damn shirt on" (she mimicked me brilliantly all with an expert eye roll thrown in for good measure). It looked like this: https://gph.is/1gF9xGQ And sounded like this: "FINE, MOM I'll put my DAMN shirt on"....note the proper emphasis on things in all caps. She's got mad skills, yo.
14 year olds, they're a hoot. Especially when hangry.
So her food of choice was a Subway foot long and I quickly googled the closest one on my way home. We set off in that direction and I offered the 8 year old the opportunity for a kids meal. That was a mistake. A BIG mistake.
The next ten minutes driving to said Subway were filled with her graphic descriptions (and these were REPEATED OVER AND OVER FOR GOOD MEASURE) about how Subway gives her diarrhea. And I mean OVER and OVER. Nonstop.
I know I mentioned this earlier, but it bears repeating: once this kid gets on a topic, you CANNOT derail her thought process. You just can't. Not even if you ask her about cats or hatchimals.
Carpool kid was about to vomit (he wasn't hungry after a 2.5 hour practice in football pads, 97 degree heat and unrelenting sun) and I kept trying to distract the smaller child with talk about something else.
Our conversation went like this:
Carpool kid: "Oh my god. I think I might puke. Can you talk about something else?"
Me: "Tell your cousin and her friend what school you are going to?" (praying to GOD this would derail her thoughts)
Small child: "I'm going to Discovery! They have tablets. I'm excited. Subway gives me diarrhea."
I drove past the Subway. I didn't even see it. Two more minutes of poop talk while I turned the car around and pulled in the parking lot. The ONLY thing I could think of was getting the small child OUT of the car, thus relieving the 14 year olds of more talk about bowel movements.
As I got out of the car and told small child to unbuckle, a grateful Carpool kid mouthed "THANK YOU" to me because I was pretty sure one more minute and I would have had a vomiting 14 year old, an annoyed and hangry 14 year old and an 8 year old talking about vomit AND sharting out her butt.
The only thing I noticed when I pulled into the lot was the title loan store next to the Subway. I dragged said small child past their door (closing sign went up as it was 6pm on the NOSE!) and we entered the cool, crisp Subway restaurant and I just prayed that small child would not bring up her poopy problems while we ordered food, given the long line of people behind us. She didn't, for the record.
At this point my only concerns were A) parent in emergency room, B) parked by title loan store, C) Subway food and sodas, and D) putting a pin in the liquid poo conversation. The two fourteen year olds were happily rapping to an Eminem song "Lose Yourself" and I figured music would keep them entertained.
I was wrong.
I brought the food and beverage back, helped buckle small child in her booster seat and sat in the drivers seat with a heavy sign only to realize AT THAT VERY MOMENT that for the past ten minutes while I was in the Subway store, my daughter and her 14 year old friend (who is a boy) were staring at the following store front:
|I circled the car and the face of my daughter for your convenience.|
|I circled the name of the store and the two most prominent items in the window display, in case you missed them.|
A few lessons were learned: Never, EVER go to this Subway again with children, 14 year olds cannot be convinced that Adam & Eve is a faith based retail adventure and our decision not to have three children was a solid one.
That's all I can say. Really.