Kids do the craziest–no strike that–stupidest things. And we have to continue to love them. That’s our job as parents. Ridiculous unconditionalness.
Yesterday, The Doobies and I went to visit Grandma on the West side. Mike met us there after work so we had two cars. We had a great time and decided to make our way home earlier than Mike so bedtimes weren’t missed. Plus, I needed to see The Voice without any little voices interrupting as I ate two too many scoops of Ruggles peanut butter chocolate ice cream awesomeness. As we drove home, the skies opened up, displaying an incredible lightening show and dousing the SUV with buckets of rain. After 40 minutes, we were almost home.
My cell phone rang. It was Mike.
“Did you take my keys?”
“Why would I take your keys?”
“Right, I know. But, they’re not here.”
“I would not take your keys. I can only drive one car at a time. Besides, they were on the table.”
“Right, I know. They’re not there.”
I knew I didn’t take his keys. But, I remembered Kaila was nearby coloring.
“Kaila, did you see Dad’s keys when you were coloring?”
“Do you know where they are?”
“Yeah! They’re in my backpack.”
I fought to regain control of the car.
“I put them in my backpack.”
“I don’t believe it. Show me.”
A set of shiny keys jingled forward from the back seat. I bit my tongue. I drew blood. I saw red.
“Why on EARTH would you put Dad’s keys in your backpack? How the HECK is he going to drive HOME?” I so wanted to say HELL–or worse. But, yoga breathing took over.
“Um. I dunno.”
“SONOFAFRICKINMICKINBICKIN. WE ARE TURNING AROUND!” I yelled into the cell phone before throwing it at an imaginary head.
Madan started moaning, doing his best “WHY ME?!?!” Nancy Kerrigan impression. I exited the highway, re-entered the highway and proceeded to drive 40 minutes in the opposite direction during a torrential downpour. The storm was a blessing because it was loud. If we didn’t have it, the kids might have picked up a few new juicy curse words to try out on the bus.
We finally got to Grandmas…again…handed over the keys and drove back home…again. But first, I had to gas up. And, Madan decided that would be the right time to take a pit stop. Men. What is it with your poor timing?
He ran into the gas station. Minutes elapsed. He ran out of the gas station.
“Mom! I found FOUR lucky pennies.”
“No. You. Didn’t. On the BATHROOM FLOOR?!?!?”
“Yeah, why? Ohhhh.” Madan stared at his hand and immediately realized the error of his ways. But, oddly enough, he still didn’t drop the pennies.
I pulled Purell out of my purse and doused my son. Three times. Then, I repeated my public restroom commandments emphasizing this one: Thou shall not touch anything lying on a public restroom floor EVER or thou will be forced to watch the Silkwood decontamination shower scene on an endless loop.
“Okay, but can we go home now?” Madan asked.
“Yes, and once we get there we will take turns beating your sister,” I deadpanned.
“I get to go first!” Madan joked.
“Mama, I am so so so so so so so so so so so SORRY!” Kaila’s tiny voice wailed.
I accepted the littlest Doobie’s heartfelt apology and quickly let her off the hook–which is where we’ll hang our damn keys from now on.