The big kids were headed to soccer clinic.
Evie had an invitation to spend the night with Grandma.
I figured, it was a great opportunity to take Isabelle on a little dinner date. Gigi would sleep in her carseat and Isabelle and I could visit over Chinese fried rice – her favorite.
She was thrilled with my invitation for a mommy-daughter-evening.
She stocked her purse with lip gloss and mints, slid at least a dozen plastic bracelets up her arm, clipped a bow in her baby dolls hair and changed her outfit.
Headed out the door, she told me I needed to change mine
,,,,,”so you can look cute like me” she said.
I took the hint and ran upstairs to throw on a skirt and a fresh swipe of lipstick.
And that my friends is where our idyllic evening ended.
We dropped the big kids off at soccer. Upon arrival at the rendezvous spot where Grandpa was to pick her up, Evie burst into tears and said she no longer wanted to spend the night at Grandmas.
“Are you sure? You’ve been begging to go to Grandmas” I reminded her.
“YES!” She screamed holding onto my arm for dear life.
“Thats fine” I assured her. “You dont have to“
As those Im-so-tired-that-I-dont-even-know-why-Im-crying sobs shook Evies body, I turned to see Izzy also burst into tears.
Inconsolible, blubbering tears.
“I….dont….want…..Evie…..to….come…..on……our….date” she spat through bursts of tears.
I tried to comfort her. I promised her another date alone with mommy.
I promised her a milkshake.
I promised her the moon.
Just choking sobs and bitter disappointment in response.
Driving now, Gigi joined the chorus of sisters on either side of her and started wailing at incredible decibels.
By this point, Evies tears had turned to tears of remorse wanting me to turn the car around and take her back to Grandmas.
“But now I DO want to spend the night” she implored.
That ship has sailed Evie!
I looked in my rear-view mirror at my three babies all howling.
Gigi kicked it up a notch. You know that newborn scream where they hold their breath so long and you’re afraid they’ll pass out?
But they never do.
We were there.
I didnt think her face could turn a brighter shade of red, so I pulled the car into the nearest Bi-Lo parking lot to feed her.
I dont know what possessed me and why I thought now would be a good time to take three tired, emotional little girls into the grocery store, but I had several necessities I wanted to pick up and thought Id take my chances with only three kids instead of six.
As I was nursing the baby, Evie started hopping around in the backseat saying she had to go pee-pee.
Gigi didnt get to finish eating. We rushed into the store and directly to the ladies room in the back.
We made it.
There were more tears when we couldnt find a red car grocery cart.
And more tears when the bakery was out of chocolate chip cookies.
Izzy had brought in a quarter that she intended to use to buy a gumball.
She dropped it r-e-p-e-a-t-e-d-l-y as we made our rounds through the store. She didnt want me to keep it for her, so I threatened that if she couldnt hold onto it, I was going to not stop the next time she dropped it.
She dropped it. Again.
And I stooped, baby in sling, list in hand, kids in cart, to pick it up. Again.
Oh the frustration when that troublesome quarter wouldnt produce a gumball when at last we checked out.
Upon further examination, it was determined that Izzy did not have a quarter, but was using foreign currency and that darned gumball machine does not in fact accept Chinese yuan.
Not Izzy’s night y’all!
Until it was time to pick up the big kids, we killed an hour at McDonalds……..where the coke machine was out of service.
A happy meal for Izzy and a shake for Evie and they were finally back on speaking terms.
Driving home, Izzy said “It not be so bad as I think with Evie on our date. I still had fun“.
Sweet, sweet Izzy. Middle Child. We will have our date. I promise.
So proud of your wise-beyond-your-years acceptance of difficult things. Life is full of hard knocks, but you’re tough little one and I love your ability to “still have fun” even when things dont go the way you expect.
Life lesson learned….all that for the price of a Happy Meal.