The plan was to meet friends and their daughter at 6. At 5:30, as I have wet hair and am not dressed, Lilah has mysterious green goo all over the front of her dress (remember she doesn't eat??), and Garrett is saying "I just want to stay home", Paul tells me our clock is 15 minutes slow (lots of power outages here lately). Great. We haven't even started the car seat/ shoe ordeal and we are already late (G is all about some independence and these things take 152x longer than they should). Did I mention it's 97 degrees out?
We get there, do the high chair, booster seat, car seat sling re-arrangement dance at first a table, then a booth, and get settled. Whew. All is well until the other couple arrives and G's lower lip starts trembling. He is genuinely afraid of the dad, always has been....even though they are some of our best friends and Garrett sees him regularly. This man is sweet, gentle, literally saves peoples lives every day, and every other child in the world loves him...but he has a mustache. Apparently, a mustache makes you "not happy", according to G. By this time Garrett is bawling! Like, my parents are about to drop me into the mouth of a tiger, crying. I try holding, whispering comforting words, creating a barrier between Garrett's eyes and said mustache man (who is, strategically, sitting at the opposite end), bribing with wild abandon--it's a no go, he' still hysterical. Paul, who equally avoids hurting anyone's feeling and causing a scene, takes Garrett outside.
10 minutes pass, I apologize for the 10th time, and I see the boys returning. They make it halfway to our table, G sees the hair on the top of his nemisis's head and starts crying again. They go back out. Sweet man follows to see if he can calm him outside. I hear G screaming though the brick wall. I order a glass of wine.
The table is reunited, Garrett is muttering "I want to be sweet", and our poor friend keeps a smile plastered on his face, so as to appear "happy", through the rest of the meal. The bread arrives and the children start dipping pieces the size of their heads into the herbed oil and slinging into their mouths. G starts whining because the herbs are lodged in his nose and burning. Of course!-why did I not think to warn him of that possibility? It might have been because I was too worried the people passing by our table, who kept bumping the car-seat sling, would actually knock Lilah to the ground.
Garrett and his 'girlfriend' start coloring. She is kind enough to share her markers, and after assigning him a particular picture and color (did I mention she also told him what to order?), they got started. This little distraction quickly turned ugly when little girl gets upset that G is sliming her markers, coloring out of the lines, and dropping the caps on the floor. The waitress comes, asks if I want another glass of wine...I scream "yes" and then realize I haven't had time to take 2 sips of the glass I already ordered:).
The food came, I think....but by then I was holding Lilah, who was literally dripping sweat from every body part (sweet baby is very hot always). I was trying to calm her without transposing any of my body/anxiety heat onto her when....Garrett literally dive bombs into my lap. He does not like to miss any snuggle fun and, apparently, it looked like we were having some. Now I have a 2 year old pizza handprint smack in the middle of my chest.
At this point, I'm looking for the exit. But, the best is yet to come!!!! I have handed Lilah off to Paul and Garrett climbs into my lap. Two seconds later, I simultaneously think is my lap wet and see G shudder (if you have boys, you know where I'm going!). In a very rare, freak diaper disaster, he has left a puddle (not an exaggeration) in my lap. CHECK PLEASE!!!!
We make it home, the whole way discussing how we are definitely going to take up chain smoking, to discover that neither one of us buckled L into her carseat. At least she's not fragile.
But, we don't have to worry about that anymore, because we are never leaving the house. (we did go to church today, but events there were much the same and just confirmed our decision).
Parenthood is a psychological experiment.