What did you guys do the other week? Do you already forget? The week when it rained. Every. single. day. Oh, me? I was crying like all day. I’m sorry, I’m being dramatic. It was more like twice in the bathroom and then once in front of both kids. And not like 4 tears. Streams of them. Sobbing. Disclaimer: don’t feel bad for me, because I don’t, and also, I know you’ve all been there too.
Cut to the chase? It was day four of constant cold wind and rain and restless toddlers. Vivi was just having one of those “I’m gonna put your mother patience to the test and see WTF you’re really made of” weeks. Only of course that was not her motive. She’s nearly 3. This is just being 3. I get that. But it was by far the worst week of them all in recent months, and here’s how we got to Thursday’s Crymageddon.
Monday: It started out nice enough. Met a friend and her daughter for lunch. Had a mimosa. Awesome. Fuck you, rainy Monday because I am winnnning. Then we had the usual dinner shenanigans where Billy fake cry whines while slamming the cabinet doors on repeat and throws all of his cups in the trash. Vivi found an old boo-boo on her knee that required immediate first aide and it took about 30 minutes to chop a stupid fucking onion. Also Roy Barboza pissed me off with a seriously intolerable Rush Hour Mix. Bath time looked like this:
Tuesday: Still raining, but Samm was back from Texas, so game on. After we left Rex and Rocky's, the whining gained momentum. If Vivi couldn’t do something like get out of her seat while the car was in motion, she instantly started screaming. Like top of her lungs, gonna make your ear drums bleed screaming. What the shit is her deal right now?! Her behavior was very confusing and exhausting. One moment she would ask, “What is the problem? Stop looking at me.” and in the next she professed her undying love for me. Cute, right? Comical even. Except when it just became a seesaw of happy/inconsolable for the entirety of the day.
Wednesday: I was greeted warmly by Vivi and then very soon after informed, “I totally want to be mean.” OMG. Who are you and what have you done with my daughter? I mean something was obviously up with her. You only needed to hear the new song she made up. She was working some shit out.
And the witch sees me
And she takes me to trouble
And I won’t go in
And I wouldn’t get out
I was not sure what to make of it, but I didn’t have time to anyway because Billy was hysterical that I walked into another room. It’s only somewhat challenging to have Billy’s separation anxiety phase coincide with Vivi’s teen angst phase. Oh also, it’s still fucking raining. But I couldn’t live like this anymore, so I suited them up and took it to the rain.
It was actually pretty fun and no one cried. In fact, they were non-stop smiling and laughing. “Alright,” I thought. Maybe I was going about this week all wrong. I just needed to shift the energy. Well yes, that’s absolutely right, but then….
Thursday: “Don’t say hi to me. You can’t talk to me. You need to go to work or go play with Billy." It was only 7am. Then she gave me a talk to the hand motion. FREEZE. I wanna side note here (like I like to do) and say that this really was just one of those “off”, totally challenging weeks. Maybe she was going through some developmental milestone I was unaware of, I don’t know. 'Cause Vivi couldn’t be more awesome. She hugs and kisses all of us constantly. She kisses all of Billy’s boo-boos and rubs his back when he cries. Her sense of humor is insane and unique and quirky.
She is the best (and your kid is too) and I know that. Okay, time in.
I decided we couldn’t be in the house anymore that day or I would start drinking at noon. We hit up Sephora at the mall to use a gift card from Christmas, because where else would two toddlers want to be? My stroller cup holder knocked down a blush display and then my coffee spilled all over it. I froze. “I’m SO sorry.” Some angel of a woman employee saw my face. “Oh, you wouldn’t believe how many times a day this happens. Don’t worry at all, I got it!” I thanked her, walked to the next aisle, and cried a little. So, I lied. I cried 4 times that day. And I got some BB cream by the way.
Back in the car and Vivi just did not want to leave, so she screamed for 15 minutes. Aren’t you tired yet, kid? How can you still have screams to cry. Home again, and there were more screams and more cries from both children, in unison. That’s when the “Mama has to go to the bathroom” (to cry twice) happened. Is this torture for you yet? Because the day was not nearly over. Off to Target we go!
It actually went fine! Vivi was singing in the back of the cart, Billy and I got matching Star Wars t-shirts, and shit was cool. Until it was time to leave. Why the muthafuck do you want to stay IN the stores? You always ask to LEAVE! What is this alternate universe we’re in? I tried, man. I made the shopping cart ride back to the car pretty fun. I pretended we were a goddamn rocket ship. The kids loved it. Then Vivi literally turned her back on me and refused to get out of the cart in the pouring rain.
More screaming in the car and Tom called in the middle of it. “Guess I don’t have to ask!” “No, don’t. In fact, we’ve been out all day because I can’t even look at the mess that is our house anymore. There are just piles of shit everywhere! I’m throwing it all the fuck out! The mail, everything!!” “Ok,” he said, “I’ll pick up a bottle of Oyster Bay.” I love that man.
Billy and Vivi both fell asleep for a restorative 10 minutes and woke up crying. Vivi would not stop as I carried her into the house. I got Billy in, and he was clinging to me, crying. Vivi was sobbing on the couch. “Please guys, pleeeease stop crying!! I don’t know what to do! I don't know what else to do!” Oh that opened the flood gates right up. Now we were all hugging and crying. A few minutes later, Vivi put herself to bed still half crying and then she stopped. I rubbed her head and asked her if she needed anything. She shook her head no, gave me a kiss, and fell asleep. What. The. Fuck. Was. This. Day?!
I texted Samm and my sister-in-law. They both told me I wasn’t alone, and they shared their own stories. Then coincidentally (I don't think so. No such thing!) “Livin’ Thing” by ELO came on the radio and Billy started dancing. (Yeah he was still up. Eating.)
That’s when I picked that piece of chunk up, ate his face, and swung him around. Okay, so I cried a fucking fifth time I think. I didn’t even care that I was covered in applesauce and boogers. There was just, in the moment, another old shifty shift of energy.
The next morning, Vivi woke up happy and very much like her old self, and things got back to good. But holy shit! That was the muthafucker of all muthafucker days for me. And I know there will be other “rainy” days, or worse, weeks. But I guess the point is, when life hands you buckets of rain, just splash the fuck out of those puddles
or sit in them for 10 minutes like Bill.
Reach out to your friends and family, pick the baby up and dance the fuck around. Because tomorrow truly is a new day. Bring it on, yo.