Crazy-ass family

You just can't make this stuff up

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Shopping With Three Children Hurts My Brain

The grocery store is packed and we've already had a long day. We're wet from the rain and chilled to the bone. Caleb and Aidan run and yell, battling their way through the aisles, calming briefly when we threaten them. The atmosphere is oppressive; people around us sigh heavily.
Liam is quickly bored and tells us about it.
He wants to get out and walk.
Aidan's nose is runny. He needs a new tissue.
Caleb is full of questions and comments, talking away consistently.
The man behind us tries to steer his cart past mine and can't; we're both blocked. Still, he inches forward and I feel the pressure of his impatience heavy on my back. Finally, the backs of my legs are met with the cold metal of his cart, and he mumbles a quiet, "je m'excuse."
My heart races.
We decide we should buy dinner at the store. It's just easier.
We look at the cooked chickens. Caleb asserts that he would like french fries. We end up getting two small pizzas for the kids and I promise to make fries at home.
Jim and I settle on salmon as the kids wonder excitedly about the lobsters in the tank. Aidan is more than mildly disturbed when I tell him why they're there, but cheers up when I tell him how yummy they are.
Liam, by now, is reaching his boiling point. I hoist him out of the cart and murmur comforting words in his ear. He's not hearing it; he wants to walk. By the time we reach the cash, I'm busy contemplating how very, very tired I am. I decide to let Liam walk a bit while Jim and the boys pay for the food.
I put Liam down, straighten up, and follow. His immense and immediate joy is evident. His arms punch the air triumphantly with each step. He explores the wine section, glancing back now and again to be sure I'm still there. Then he beelines to the frozen foods section and slaps his hands, spread out like starfish, on the doors of the ice cream section. A woman nearby laughs and comments, in French, that the kid knows what he wants.
My heart begins to feel a little lighter.
Liam looks at me mischievously and toddles away behind a stack of boxes.
"Where's Liiiiaaaaam?" I inquire.
He peeks out and I say, "BOO!" and he has a good belly laugh.
People around us are smiling.
He fights me all the way back to the cash to meet Jim and the boys, but I pretend he's an airplane and zoom him through the air.
Those few minutes changed everything. Cool.
And hardly anyone tried to run over us with their cart.


At 9:24 AM, Blogger deepoet said...

Maybe someday soon I'll come up there and give you a hand with them little critters. Oh, my, wouldn't that just be so nice?

At 4:58 PM, Blogger The Mater said...

I'm glad you can extract the joy from the overwhelming drudgery of shopping with three kids. Grace under pressure, eh?

At 1:22 AM, Blogger Eve said...

Sometimes those happy little moments can just save us, huh?
Get well soon, Tree.
SHOO, crappy cold.

At 4:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your blog caught my eye as I have one that is about my family.I was taken back to when my kids were young,things were so much simpler reading yours.But when I say my family is weird you have no idea! their like the addams family without the values.Stop in sometime,check it out.


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