Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Emily and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

I woke up three times in the night to Macy complaining that she was scared.  I got out of bed late and rushed Austin through homework and we scrambled through the sock basket because none of the socks in our house are matched and we went on a mad shoe-hunt and glove hunt right when it was time to leave.  I didn't fit in a shower and I mistakenly skipped breakfast while I in my mad rush to get all kids to school.  When I finally reached the parking lot, I backed into another car as I was trying to park.  I could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

After filling out accident reports in 19 degree weather, all the time realizing that I left my gloves at home, I finally made it into the store to exchange (not return - exchange) the curtain rods and curtains that are the wrong size only to find that if you can't find your receipt (even though the new curtains are actually a higher price and you therefore want to spend more money in their store) and you tried to be fiscally responsible by paying cash (I got some cash for Christmas and I figured when it's gone, it's gone - I'll decorate my room until the money runs out) you can't actually exchange anything.  While expressing my disbelief for such a ridiculous exchange policy, a manager finally told me that he would allow me to return three items.  Great!  What good does it do to return one curtain rod and two curtain panels only to have the other curtain rod mismatched!  

I think I'll move to Australia.    

I ran home, ransacked the house for the receipt, and finally found it tucked away in a pocket of my old purse.  Two and half hours later, I walked out of the store with a hungry baby, a $500 fender bender, a starving pregnant lady, and curtain rods that will actually fit my stupid bedroom windows.  I was having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

I nearly fell asleep during Nathan's piano lesson, Paige decided to "empty" her own training potty during Josh's piano lesson (some of it actually made it on the inside of the toilet bowl), and Paige cried through most of Maddie's piano lesson because the three-hour trip to Target took much longer than the anticipated 10-minute trip so she missed her nap, of course.   

Maybe I should ship my children to Australia.  

Austin came how with a "Report Card" today full of an entire page of comments/parenting suggestions from his teacher.  As usual, he isn't living up to his potential.  This time, it was suggested that "we" set a goal of "following directions the first time."  Brilliant!  I wonder why Greg and I haven't thought of that one before!  I look forward to Parent/Teacher Conferences and Progress Reports like I look forward to pap smears.  

Maybe I should find a gynecologist in Australia.          

As a result of the "glowing" Progress Report," I harped on Austin for an hour and a half while he was working on what was supposed to be a "fun" research project for school.  I was critical, demeaning, impatient, embarrassed, frustrated, and it ended in tears - for both of us.  It was definitely a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.  

For bedtime, I pulled my act together but insisted that I choose the bedtime story.  We read "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day" by Judith Viorst.  I looked at my children and said: "I have had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day today."  Macy's eyes got enormous and she said, "For reals?"  I explained that I had been in my very first car accident and it was completely my fault and it was going to cost me a lot of money.  Austin said, "How much?"  I said, "Probably $500."  His eyes got as big as Macy's at this point because he understands money now.  I apologized for my behavior and expressed my frustration but that it was no excuse for my impatience and anger.  They both forgave me...for the five-billionth time.  

I know that it really wasn't that horrible of a day.  I know that truly horrible days include words like "brain tumor" and "layoffs" and phone calls at 2 a.m. followed by "There has been an accident."  I know that my day wasn't horrible at all - It was a stupid day.  I made a lot of rookie mistakes, and I got more and more frustrated/angry/disappointed with myself as the day went on.  A lot of great things happened today as well: no one got hurt in the accident, I finally did get my stupid curtain situation resolved, I spent some one-on-one time with Macy giving her a "reading lesson" and she did pretty well, I have great friends who listened to me vent, my husband wasn't upset at all when I told him about the accident that was ALL my fault (have I mentioned that part yet), we do have car insurance, my Honda Odyssey definitely won "The Battle of the Mini-vans" over the Dodge Caravan (a few scratches on my car - not even a dent, and a completely destroyed bumper on her car), even though we were gone WAY longer than expected, Paige didn't have an accident in her "Beauty" panties while we were out running errands, and my mom happened to be home for a late lunch when I stopped by to pick up some costumes for Young Women.  Not to mention the fact that Jackie just dropped off eclairs from Schmidt's Bakery which will make a completely delectable dinner.  My biggest regret at the end of the day is losing my temper with my kids.  I'd give almost anything - I'd pay a thousand insurance deductibles - if I could just stop yelling at my kids.  I hate seeing that pathetic, deflated look on their face, and I hate the fact that I put it there.  I hate it more than anything in the whole wide world.  

It has been a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

My mom says some days are like that.

Even in Australia.  

13 comments:

Mindi said...

We love this book because it makes us laugh. I am so glad you have a sense of humor--it is our greatest mercy in this life. Your kids adore you and they will wake up to a new day, with a clean slate, and a mother who wants nothing more (just like all of us out there do) than to do just a tiny bit better today--that is why, I believe, God created tomorrows. You are amazing. Thank you for sharing and celebrating this crazy life.

Alexie said...

Have you thought of publishing this- as a picture book for adults? i think it would do well- even pay for that deductible!

Alexie said...

ps- your kids could illustrate it. :o)

Jana said...

At least there wasn't kissing on T.V.!!
That was a perfect parody of the book! Way to go. Glad your day is over!

Amber said...

Emily, this was so sad but hilarious! Aren't you so glad kids have short memories and such an amazing ability to forgive?!! And no matter who you are or where you live, getting in a car accident IS a bad day. Hope today is better!

Jackie said...

Someday you will look back on this day and laugh...I know it made Spence laugh when I was telling him about your terrible day last night. :-) You need to post pictures of your room when completed...

Krainich Family said...

Amen Sister. This was a fabulous post. We all have those days don't we? You are a GREAT mom. . . just tired and pregnant! Isn't it in the handbook that moms are allowed to yell more and get impatient more when they are hormonal and pregnant? I am pretty sure I read that in "What to expect when you are expecting." Luckily everyday is a new day! Loves! I am so sorry to hear about the fender bender. That really Sucks.

Malisa said...

What a great post! Sorry for the bad day that had to happen.

Elizabeth said...

Loved this post...made me cry. Like you said there are so many things worse than feeling frazzled and having a horrible day...except in those moments when you are feeling frazzled and having a horribel day! Sometimes I think that my head is going to explode. I frazzle easily. :) I agree with Lex...you should send this in and publish it somewhere. You are a talented writer my friend. Really. Hope you don't have anymore of those days for a while. love ya

Jen-ben said...

Even though you had such a crappy day, you handled it so well, and I couldn't help but LAUGH at this post. Especially your "Gyno in Australlia" sentence. You crack me up.
I loved this one, it was a very terrible, horrible, not good, very bad day.
xoxoxo

Valerie said...

Days like that happen when you're pregnant. Without the hormones, it's just roll-you-eyes kind of day. Then, POOF. Hormones make it every kind of bad adjective you can think of! I hope you have a whole week of wonderful days to balance things out now!!

Tera said...

Emily, you are so eloquent. My bad days seem like the world will end, I have had a few lately, and I too am glad for kids who forgive, and forget so quickly. Hope you are feeling better and that your hormones won't get the best of you for many more days! hope you are having a better day.

Kristy said...

I like what Anne Shirley said: "Tomorrow is a fresh slate, with no mistakes in it."