Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Yet Another Mommy Screw-Up: When Will It End???????

It was an atypical Wednesday afternoon at the MM household.
And by atypical, I mean peaceful.

Merlot Girl (her new name, you like?) gets out early on Wednesdays, so I picked her up and took her for a haircut.
While she was pampered, I  relaxed in a comfy chair, eating a tasty Subway salad and checking my emails.
We picked up Merlot Boy (you like?) from school promptly at 3pm.  No rushing, no fretting.

We returned home to no evidence of destruction - no shredded magazines, no chewed up shoes, no signs of paw prints on the kitchen island.
All was good with the world.
And continued to be,
As the kids did their homework without fuss,
As I walked my two dogs around the block,
As I chatted with neighbors,


At 5pm,
With one call to my cell,
My blissful bubble burst


"Hey," my friend said, "I've been calling you.  Can I pick up my boy now?"
"What?!" I screamed into the phone, in shock, my brain slowly processing my  mistake.

"Alright," she said, not believing me.  "Just have him ready, okay?"

Why would my friend believe me?  I've often pulled pranks of this nature; pretending I'd forgotten to pick up her kid, or neglected to feed him dinner,  or let him swim in an unheated pool in 50 degree weather.

I don't do it much anymore (I'm maturing I guess), but rest assured it was only with a select few who I knew could forgive handle my SICK sense of humor.

"Holy shit!" my stomach fell.  "I forgot to take him home!  Shit!"  

Today was my day to carpool.

Realizing I was telling the truth she panicked, "Where do you think he is?" she asked.  "How long do they keep the yard open?"

"I think someone's there 'til 6,"  I tried to reassure her.

"Alright, I'm going to look for him."
I demanded. "Let me go.  Please.  I feel awful.  I want to go."

I locked my kids in the house with a rushed, cryptic explanation.  I sped through the neighborhood, slamming the gas pedal and making perfunctory stops.  As I ran onto campus,  I did not see him.

What if something happened?   I thought.  What if he's upset?  What if he's crying?  Why didn't he call anyone?  Shit, I'm such an idiot.

And then there he was.  Waiting.

I threw up my arms, "I'M SORRY, I'm sorry, it's all my fault."
I explained how I was supposed to pick him up, how I totally spaced (I'm mostly into the honest, adults are totally imperfect approach) and I promised him a huge ice cream.  (Good, right?)

He was cool about it, unharmed,  immediately taking advantage of the situation by trying to wrangle a cell phone from his mom.

But it made me think that something so obvious to us, like finding an adult or going to the school office to ask for a phone, isn't always obvious to a kid.  When I asked him about this, he said the adult supervisor he knew was inside with another group, not on the yard, and he didn't think that the office was open.  I explained to him the various options should this ever happen again. (Not by me, of course.)

I apologized profusely to the mom who was also cool about it (thank G-d), I came home and explained the situation to my son so he, too, would know what to do if I ever didn't show up as planned.

So my atypically peaceful afternoon ended precisely at 5pm.
It's just about 6pm and my house, once again, reeks of typical.
My son is bitching about feeding the dogs, my daughter is conference video-chatting with friends, and I am sitting at my computer, writing, with a nice, big glass of red wine by my side.

Dinner? Who's making dinner?

Sort of.


*graphic courtesy of Google Images


heather... said...

SNORT. It hasn't happened to me. But it will. Believe me. It will.

Darryle said...

This happened to me, too. Twice. Happy to report that we all survived.

Missives From Suburbia said...

That will make my hair turn white the day it happens to me. Fortunately, my youngest child is still in the womb, and my oldest is only two and refuses to let me out of his sight. So for now, we're safe.

Marinka said...

I really want to read the other mom's blog post on this.

That must have been super scary for you!

2KoP said...

Every mom I know has committed this error in one form or another. That's why so many of our kids do have cell phones — mama guilt and mama error are fueling the cell phone industry.

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

This is why I can never relax when things are peaceful. It must be because I'm forgetting something. I freak out when this sort of thing happens and I don't even HAVE kids. I can't imagine the turmoil this would cause for you.

All Adither said...

ZOMG, I live in fear of doing this. Glad it all worked out okay.

AMomTwoBoys said...

Holy Shit. Dude. I can totally imagine the uneasy feeling in your stomach.

Eek. She's an AWESOME friend.

merlotmom said...

Thanks everyone for your comments. THe reason I'm not replying?? My emails still down. Sheesh.

InTheFastLane said...

That is all made so much worse, being that it was someone else's kid...I am glad she was nice about it.

Manic Mommy said...

It was quiet...too quiet.

Oh well, another year off your life.

JCK said...

OH, GOD, MM. Have another glass. I am so glad the other mom was so cool about it all. And the good news is that he was safe and really, fine, where he was. Sending hugs to you.

Maggie, Dammit said...


You poor thing.



Seriously, good thing that mom was awesome about it.

oh you poor thing!

Insta-mom said...

My mom usually picks up my kids. But on the days I'm supposed to, I always forget. So far he's sat waiting twice this year. The school people just smile and wave as I rush in, panting my apologies.

Petra a.k.a The Wise (*Young*) Mommy said...

I totally have nightmares about this happening to me, either with one of my own kids or someone else's.

So sorry it had to happen to you in real life!

Dariela said...

Hi there!
This could be any mom's nightmare. Thank god he was fine and you did great in explaining what to do, it would never occur to me.
My sister once forgot to pick up my 20 month boy from day care and she was so upset she was crying but I was ok cause at least he was in daycare and the lady was with him. I understand how one can feel though!

momready said...

I've done it too. I live in fear I'll do it again!

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