The Pickup Parade
When Jon arrived home, he eyed the pile of rubble stacked on the kitchen counter. “Why does the boys’ backpack look like it’s been dragged through the mud?” he inquired.
Funny you should ask…
I was on pickup duty today. It was approximately 118 degrees outside when I arrived, so I immediately lost the demure sweater I’d worn to brave the 8-degree conference rooms in my office.
As I crossed through the final barrier gate (designed to keep tiny people contained in their sandy box), both boys sprinted toward me – arms outstretched. In this moment it became abundantly clear that wearing a silk blouse to pick up the boys from preschool was a poor life decision.
Destroy, proud of his newly developed abilities to successfully drink from the big boy cup, filled his Dixie cup to the brim, toddled over, and poured it on me.
Well, so much for this silk shirt, I thought. No reason to keep this on any longer.
“MO WATA!” Destroy demanded. No more water kid. I haven’t seen you drink a drop. This went over precisely as well as you’re presently imagining it did.
As I continued wrangling the two, a panic-stricken looking dad (*clearly* out of his element and a little terrified by the number of small people running around) looked over toward my ongoing muppet circus. A shocked double-take moment later, he exclaimed, “Oh my god! There’s two!”
Thank you Captain Obvious. You mean I haven’t just been running around after a super hyper-active singleton this whole time? I have more than one of them?! I have multiple children?! Who knew?
“Hi Bwad. Bye bye,” interrupted Search, waving at his little friend.
“Is that your friend Brad?” I encouraged my social little Search.
“Yesh,” he replied decidedly.
Yesh, I realized. There is, in fact, a Brad Pitt in my sons’ Tiny Twos summer class. Talk about pressure on a toddler to be cool… I asked my kid if he’d also played with Angie during school.
“Pak pak,” Search brushed me off, as he marched across the Sitting Circle Rug to the cubby he shares with his brother. He was GOING to carry this thing out. By himself.
I was pretty sure he’d fit better *inside* the backpack.
“MY pak pak,” Search glared at me.
Hell, I was pretty sure he AND his brother would fit more comfortably inside as opposed to correctly worn as a backpack.
We began trudging out toward the street. The pak pak dragging along behind him. And since he really could easily have fit inside, it was rather slow going.
Suddenly, Search darted out into the middle of the parking lot – causing me to go streaking after him. (And at the rate I was losing clothing, I may as well have been streaking.)
“We do NOT run in the parking lot. That’s dangerous!”
“My car. Mommee car,” he nodded back.
Yes. That is where we were headed. Across a basketball court length of simmering newly laid asphalt coated with the dust of ongoing corporate construction, we finally made it to the MomMobile.
“Remember! Hand on the car!” I instructed each little hellion as I was forced to wrestle both boys into their seats like a WWE champion. Hand on the car provides a semblance of sanity that no small child is cavorting about the pickup line like a red handkerchief in a bull-fighting ring.
I took a deep breath.
“Hi Mommee,” Destroy reached out to me for a hug, clutching at my grey skirt with a cherubic smile spread across his adorable chipmunk cheeks. Ahh…bliss, contentment, a perfect moment reminding me of all the benefits of motherhood.
Also the realization that “Hand on the car” equates to the high likelihood that little hands will find interesting crevices to examine. Including those covered in motor oil. And those chubby arms were reaching for a napkin, not a hug. Mommy’s outfit was a perfectly acceptable substitute.
So much for that skirt.
Sweaty, disheveled and wearing slightly less clothing than with which I’d initially arrived, I had successfully picked up the boys from preschool. But hey – the devil is in the details.