In this heat

angry stompingThere are days.  Not most days or even somedays, but just a handful of exception days (especially hot and humid, no beach in sight days) where I can’t help but think FML. Yes, it’s awful. Isn’t it mostly people with first world problems who use this terminology? I really have no reason to say f*ck my life, but there are days. Take for example Sunday. Should be a great day, right? Awesome breakfast, church, loving family, wonderful friends, a day of rest, right? Not this time.

The baby missed his morning nap entirely, but he had a great, post lunch nap. Could be worse. And there was not much of a chance for rest because uniforms needed to be washed for school Monday and groceries needed to be purchased. But who needs rest on Sunday when you get a chance to rest on Saturday? No big thing.

Things started to go down hill the second I got back from the grocery store.

The baby suddenly got crazy fussy. Crazy because it’s not the norm for him to be fussy, unless of course he thinks you’re withholding food. His picture can then can be found in Webster’s alongside the definition of HANGRY. But that’s not the point, we weren’t withholding food and he had a long, post lunch nap so why the fuss? My husband tells me he thinks the baby has a fever. Panic. I know it’s just a fever, but fevers in babies will always induce a small tinge of panic. Nothing a little Tylenol can’t fix, right?

After a quick dose of medicine, I realize that if I don’t get some food going, it will be pizza for dinner. This of course will totally make the 5-year-old’s day, but will defeat my efforts of providing her with a consistent, healthier option. I refuse to let her win the food battle, not necessarily the eating battle, but the what’s for diner, I don’t want it unless it’s pizza battle. She may eat only one bite, but I refuse to let her think it’s completely acceptable to eat pizza every day of the week.

My husband has the baby, the 5-year-old is playing in her room, so I attack dinner. The baby is still crying. Ugh. I hurry. The 5-year-old emerges from her room to request my presence. In a rare act of attending to her needs first, I stop mid-chop to see what’s up.

The American Girl Dolls are in their stroller and Lola’s request is that we go for a leisurely stroll. Seriously, in this heat? is the look on my face, but in an effort to meet her halfway, a gritted teeth, Fine is the response that comes out. I do let her know that I need to finish cooking and then we can go (in this heat). All smiles from the 5-year-old. I begrudgingly pat myself on the back. I don’t really want to go for a walk, so I’m not sure that I’ve really scored one for mom. One last request, can she wear her Fiesta dress? Red flag. Why this specific dress for a walk? Clearly, she has something else in mind. I wish she would come clean so we can avoid potential drama. No dice, it’s just a walk she says.

Dinner is in the oven and the baby has been rocked to sleep, so we head out for our walk. The conditions are clearly stated.  Let it be known by all parties going on this walk, that this is an out and back walk. No messing around. I mean, it’s hot people. In my opinion, when it’s this hot, nature and walks are best appreciated by the beach.

We head out. Instead of the usual left turn at the intersection, Lola would like to keep going straight. Uh oh. Second red flag. Lola innocently says she wants to walk by and see if one of our neighbors is home. Here we go. I brace myself. This is not going to be pretty, especially, that’s right, you guessed it, in this heat. I remind my child that this is just a walk, not a well orchestrated way of getting a last minute play date. You can imagine the reaction that followed. If you can’t imagine it because your children rarely break down or adore you and never erupt in a fury of emotions let me give you a glimpse. There was crying and gnashing of teeth, otherwise known as stomping of Hello Kitty flip flops and pink and white ruffles swirling about in an angry frenzy. I alternated between standing there and turning around to head home. I would have walked on, but every time my daughter abandoned the dolls and came running after me. I doubt anyone would have picked up the dolls, but I couldn’t take the risk. No telling what would happen if in the time it took us to get home something happened to those dolls. I shudder even thinking about it. We walked to the end of the block with more stomping, yelling, fast pacing, stroller pushing, and unbearable heat. And in that moment, I though FML, the baby has a fever, the 5 year old is unreasonable and it is SO freaking hot outside.

But no good can come of this attitude. Negativity leads nowhere. I’ve tried it. It just makes me a yeller and resentful and angry and on and on. So, I did what I read so often you should do. Write down my blessings or at least think of them and maybe take lots of deep breaths. Oh yeah, and walk away. I’ve always disliked the whole blessing bit because it always felt like preachy advice (that could just be the negativity speaking). I just wanted to be angry for a moment and then move on instead of trying to fix it with a smiley face bandage. And in that moment, I was angry, annoyed, frustrated, tired, overwhelmed. I was all those things. And then I breathed in, forgot about the heat for a split second and 3 things came to mind.

Coffee – I am so lucky I got to sit down and have a cup that day. It doesn’t always happen that way.

Yoga – I’m so glad I get to do this every once in a while. I wish I hadn’t been so black and white in college and thought that some sort of evil lurked behind this practice. I’m not sure if it’s tension/stress that’s making my muscles tight or if it’s tight muscles that’s creating more tension/stress. All I know is that after yoga, (not so much during, because during I feel like I’m going to snap in two) I feel a lot more relaxed.

The heat that day – I know, with all the complaining this should be the last thing on my list, but thank God it was so hot outside. This meant most people were inside enjoying  air conditioning and no one was around with a front row ticket to the craziness of that particular walk. It’s entirely possible that people were peeking out their windows, but who knows they might have thought mother and daughter were playing a super fun game, right?

And just like that the FML moment passes because really, it’s not all bad.  Certainly not FML.

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