One trip to Target. Surely we can handle that. I mean, they're five, seven, and ten now, it won't be like it was 4 years ago, or even last year...right? I can do this. Surely we're there.
These were the thoughts that ran through my head yesterday, as I headed out the door for my first trip to Target this summer with all three.
I don't have a baby or a toddler to run wild anymore. I don't have to watch everyone like a hawk anymore, they can follow instructions...
I gave my speeches on the way: No begging for things, I'm only buying what's on my list, I expect good behavior, etc...
The first 20 minutes were fine. The kids were a little rambunctious, but ok. They were being silly, goofy, funny, and just a little too loud as they pretended to drink and eat the giant bright, colored signs of lemonade and hot dogs that dangled from the ceiling. They were actually making me laugh and I think I even had an, Awe, I love their fun imaginations!, moment. As we hit the last part of our list I was feeling pretty good, and the end was in sight.
The tide turned as we waited for a couple of minutes in the pharmacy line. The volume level increased and the playing turned to arguing.
ABORT ABORT, my brain screamed at me as I drove my cart to the checkout. Then the whining started...
Mom! Look at that shirt! I want to get that for Annie for her birthday! Please, Please, PLEASE! Why not? WHYYYYYY? You are SO MEAN! I just want to do something nice for Annie! You won't let me be a nice sister!
In my calm, public mommy voice I repeat, I said I'm sticking to my list and I meant it.
As I try to ignore Ellie's tears, pleas, and shouts of anger, Austin starts...
Mommy pwease pwease PWEASE, can I have this candy? Oooo, wook at dis car! PWEASE mommy!
No, son. It's not on mommy's list.
I hurriedly unload the cart, telling Ellie to calm down, while watching Austin to make sure he puts the candy back, then intercepting him about 17 times as he tries to sneak various items onto the conveyor belt. Suddenly, I hear a frantic voice say, Oh sweetheart, PLEASE get down from there! and I turn to see Annie trying to use the top edge of the cart as a BALANCE BEAM.
What are you thinking??? My calm, public mommy voice goes out the window as I lower my acrobatic daughter to the floor. I load the bags into the cart and head for the exit, load everything and everyone in, climb into the car, and reach for the Excedrin migraine.
So yeah, we're not there yet.
Maybe next year.