Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Great Escape

Michelle at Scribbit is hosting her monthly Write Away Contest and the topic it The Great Escape. Here is my story:

The Great Escape
I was on my way. Expectation was in the air and my husband was at my side. The kids were safely tucked away at my parent's house and having the time of their lives. A stay at Mimi and Poppy's house always means lots of new toys and treats.

I love my children and the thought of being away from them even for a little while was exciting though a little sad. But I needed this break. Lord knows I. needed. this. break.

Michael, our four year old, was having an identity crisis. Did he love Mommy or did he love Daddy? He wanted to be with Daddy 24/7, but with Daddy's work, total Daddy Time was not an option. And though Mommy was an okay substitute, he still found time to be irascible. Mommy was not the ultimate authority, he was, doggone it, and everyone would know it, -- especially Mommy. But Mommy was the one he'd turn to for kisses on knees and games of hide and seek. A good kid, but with the sudden appearance of temper tantrums lately, I was glad for even the briefest of escapes.

Cherie, our one and a half year old daughter, was (and still is) the most affectionate child I've ever come across. Affectionate to the point of clingy. And putting her down to do dishes or go to the bathroom was proving to be a one of my greatest challenges. I'd quickly learned how to do dishes one handed, but I drew the line at holding her during my trips to the loo. She was also having issues with the "new" baby.

What a cute bundle of hyperactivity our surprise gift from God was proving to be. And impatient! When he decided it was time to eat, boy, Mommy had better be at the ready! Getting him to bed at night was always an event of epic proportions. The other two, when babies, could be put in their cribs and after a few moments of crying, they would find their thumb and sooth themselves to sleep. Not so for Mark.

He could outlast me any day and he learned how to work that to his advantage quickly. And he preferred the binki to the thumb, which meant that someone had to always be on hand to retrieve the binki when it mysteriously ended up flung across the room behind heavy furniture amidst dust bunnies and petrified Cheerios. The child was in perpetual motion. Even in his sleep.

I was worn out.

The Calm One and I stepped out of the mommy mobile and interlaced our fingers. He gave me the same smile that made me fall in love with him and we entered the doors.

"Hello, there." I gave our last name and the receptionist clicked away on her computer. "You're right on time. I understand you'll be with us for a couple of days. How are you?" She didn't wait for a reply, guessing what my answer would be. " Someone will be with you all in a moment." She pointed to a couple of comfy looking chairs, indicating we should sit. We did.

TCO put his arm around the back of my shoulder and said, "Well this is it," he said as we checked out our immediate surroundings. "I am sorry that it's not exactly what you had in mind."

"Are you kidding?" was my reply. "I am so desperate for some "me time" that I could hardly await for today to arrive! Besides, who wouldn't want -- " I began ticking off the high points on the fingers of my left hand, "to sleep in as late and as much as you want, a bevy of people at your beck and call and for someone else to do the cooking?!" I sighed and closed my eyes at the very thought.

He just shook his head in bewilderment and then shrugged as if to communicate, "If you say so."

"Mrs. Calm One?" I opened my eyes and grinned at the green clad figure standing in front of me. " Right this way, please. We'll get you settled in and start prepping you for the removal of your gall bladder now."

I gladly followed.


  1. Had my gallbladder out too! My daughter is doomed, every female on both sides of her family has had it removed, most before they're even 35 or 40.

  2. Loved the surprise ending! It's both humorous and sad that it takes illness or injury to make us set aside a few of the motherly tasks we do all the time.

  3. I love surprise endings, too, and this one really took me by surprise. I imagined you were at a spa, or something equally relaxing. But, even a hospital stay would be welcome sometimes. Good writing!


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