Monday, June 16, 2008
Happy Father's Day
As a lovely ode to Father's Day, my husband spent all day Saturday golfing with his Dad (and Mom- how did SHE snake her way in??) leaving me to fend for myself on day 6 in-a-row of "alone with needy toddler and needier-still dog". Not feeling up for a trip to the beach and knowing that both 'needers' would make another day around the house not nearly as relaxing and pleasant as it should be, we headed for a 'hike' at Laguna Park. Although my two year old calls it a hike, I like to think of it more as an event entitled 'Death March for Toddler Exhaustion'. We pull up by the dog park, dog sniffs, poops, etc. and then we're off across the field with playground as goal. Toddler meanders, pokes sticks in holes (hopefully not homes of rattlesnakes) and eventually the playground is achieved. That day, for whatever reason, toddler was too cool for the playground and instead wanted only to compete with annoying dog in a game of who can stand closest to Mom- argh! Death March ON! We continue through the park(20 more minutes of marching) and come across a lovely clearing on the side of the lake with a nice little dock. As we enter the clearing, I notice an older guy sitting in a lawn chair, enjoying a patch of sun and reading a novel (yeah- I'm jealous and definitely slightly bitter). Encouraged by a small flock of ducks on the edge of the lake dog immediately starts acting like a total jackass. I suddenly realize that dog is about 90% committed to jumping into the lake to chase aforementioned ducks, and let me tell you, this lake is no pristine reservoir, it is a damn nasty-ass duck-poop filled, muddy, stinky pit and hell if I'm going to deal with this freakin' dog all covered in this biohazardous gunk. I immediately start doing the fake and dodge and manage to capture, leash and tie dog to nearest picnic table. During this 45 second process the toddler has decided he needs to try his 'dock-legs' out and is making full and steady progress down the railed(thank God) gang-plank to the very un-railed dock. Oh NO....Mom bounds across grassy patch, almost eats total-shit by slipping on a huge goose turd, stays miraculously upright and manages to grab toddlers collar just as Croc-covered toes trip their way onto the dock. Breathing heavy, Mom looks down at toddler to see his eyes aglow with excitement- apparently, docks ARE COOL. Stretching all last reserves of patience, Mom spends a good 5 minutes guarding toddler from sure toxic drowning death so that he may 'enjoy' this 'amazing' experience. These entire 5 minutes are pleasantly filled with the sound of dog-throwing-fit: barking, whining, and crying (amazingly, at times, sounding very similar to toddler-throwing-fit). Finally, Mom has had enough, gives the '2 minute warning' to leave, and after 20 seconds, declares the two minutes up and starts dragging toddler towards shore. And yes, you guessed it, toddler has now joined dog in a fit-throwing symphony. This once peaceful patch of earth has now become a total cacophony of tantrums....we all know our child throwing fits sucks, but what sucks even more is child-throwing-fits in presence of total stranger- who at this point has laid book down on knee and is just sitting and at staring at our highly annoying and very motley crew. Holding kicking toddler under arm, I kneel down in wet grass to untie dog, who has managed to wrap leash around legs multiple times AND has large white trails of foam pouring from mouth. Dragging dog, clenching toddler, I look over my shoulder and say, "We're out of here, please enjoy the rest of your book." To which this beautiful stranger answers, "You have just given me a whole new appreciation of Motherhood." Happy MOTHER's Day To All.