Sunday, March 17, 2013

Dining with Children.

Being a parent, you know that there are certain experiences that are more challenging to handle with children. Shopping. Errands. Peeing. Breathing...

But by far, the most horrible of the horrible experiences has to be going out to dinner with them.

You spent a ton of money and cross your fingers, praying not to have to fork out money to assuage the disgust of anyone having a table within earshot of screeching/reach of flying spaghetti/radius of diaper smell.

As the mom, you give away most of your food and then eat your cold meal in under 6 seconds. Usually between trips to the restroom, blocking the hand-offs of scalding objects and spoon feeding so many people that you feel like a clumsy version of that Indian Goddess chick with all the arms.

Going to a restaurant leaves you fraught with panic, completely mortified and promising yourself (and sometimes the manager) that you will never eat out again.

But last night was different. My children were well behaved. Angelic even.

We were seated next to this little old woman, who was by herself reading a book. Holden, our three year old and Cora, our four year old, sat on either side of me and Phoenix, who is six, sat next to daddy. They colored their menus quietly, as Jude and I glanced awkwardly at each other.

I actually remember saying, "They are being so good that I don't know what I'm supposed to be doing now..."

He shrugged.

What did I do at dinner before children? Should we be talking about something? Oh my God, I don't even know where I'm supposed to put my hands. On the table? In my lap? They're usually moving quickly and filled with children's items.

So, we started talking, ordered drinks calmly, no tantrums or anything. I even got to read the menu. Holden decided he wanted to snuggle with me and he put his head on my arm. I tussled his hair. Cora nuzzled in too. I was in the middle of a snuggle sandwich and I was eating it up. Phoenix ran over to give me a hug and a kiss and then went right back to her seat. They were the perfect children!

OMG! Have we finally gotten to a point where we can go to a restaurant and eat now?!?

I glanced up and I caught the old woman watching us out of the corner of my eye. She was smiling. And I got that swelling of pride, you know, that feeling when you're really killing it parenting-wise and someone actually catches you doing a good job for change. I was a good mom. This woman thought I was a good mom. And my kids are good kids. We've raised good kids. I felt unstoppable.

And Holden looked over at me. And I looked into his big, baby blues.

And I saw that look. That puckered-lip-half-burp look.

And I knew that all that cute shit was over.

I grabbed a napkin and prayed that it was gonna just be a little bit.


I caught the first wave of chunky food with the napkin.

Ok, that wasn't so bad. Maybe nobody noti.....


It shot out like he was mid demon possession. Panicked, I put my hands under the stream, attempting to catch the vomit as it dripped through my fingers and onto my pants and boots. Apparently, you cannot catch vomit in your hands. Cue that "The More You Know" thingy.


I had run out of napkins and was just watching him, defeated, as he vomited straight onto the table top, which then ran off onto the floor. The Denny's dining room grew silent as people watched in horror, choking back their own vomit and trying to prevent this from becoming a vomit waterfall.

The waiter ran over, probably wishing he had spit in our entrees, an insufficient number of napkins in tow. I tried, unsuccessfully to clean up the gallons of puke.

I swear, two bites = two gallons of puke somehow.

I looked up and the old woman averted her gaze.


He had managed to pull off the long con. He ruined, not only the enjoyment of the adjoining tables' meals, but the collective appetite of the entire Denny's establishment. And then we took the parade route to the bathroom, him covered in vomit, and myself attempting to ignore the stares of disgust and whispers of disgruntled Denny's patrons.

Welp, back to "bad mom". And I smell like puke. And we can never go to Denny's again. Cross that one off the list.

Maybe we'll try again in ten years. Hopefully by then they'll remember that it's rude to puke at the dinner table. And if they do puke, I'll remember not to try to catch it.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Working from home. With kids.

So a little over a week ago, I fell off the face of the earth. I haven't tweeted, blog rolled, facebooked, emailed. I have completely neglected all of my e-sponsibilities.

I have been overwhelmed. Exhausted. Stressed to the max.

Because being the masochist I am, I took a job working from home. And I am losing my motherfucking mind.

Basically, working from home while you have little kids at home with you means that you try to ignore your kids for as long as you can get away with before your head (or theirs) explodes. If you are really bad at ignoring them, you get fired. If you are really good at ignoring them, they probably die. You know, because you can't watch Dora the Explorer without the ambience that the warm glow of a microwaved sibling provides.

One thing is for sure, my kids will not go down without a fight. They will be damned if I'm gonna work and they have decided that they are going to make it impossible. This is basically how it has gone.

So I'm figuring it out. Slowly.

But this is basically what it's like to work from home when you have children:

Working from home with kids is beastly. Because you feel like you are failing at parenting and failing at working all at the same time. At best, you strike a balance and are mediocre at both.

It's a little hellish.

So that's where I've been lately.