Sunday, January 1, 2012

The Month of Insanity

You know when you plan something out on paper and it makes sense?  It totally seems like you can accomplish x amount in y time.  Or have time to cook dinner, blog, do the laundry and take a shower during the baby's nap.  Uh huh.  Maybe on a really good day!

A  couple of months ago I planned my "East Coast Tour" now to be known as "Month of Insanity".  I thought it would be a good way to make the time pass and I really wanted to do everything I had planned.  Clearly I didn't really plan it out.  After all, who would willing drive over 2,790 miles ALONE with a toddler and sometimes a dog, pregnant, all within a month's time.  I can see all your hands going up shouting ME! Me! let Me!!! 

The Little Guy, the dog and my pregnant self have managed to travel from South Carolina to Pennsylvania (all after flying in from the West Coast of course).  We've been back and forth from KY to TN twice and logged lots of miles and renditions of the "Wheels on the Bus".  This is currently his favorite song.  We have also listened to 10th Avenue North's version of "Deck the Halls" about 762 times.  It seems to be the only thing that makes the Little Guy smile when is ready to get out of the car.

All joking aside I do plan to write a few tips for toddler traveling in a future blog post.  But for this one I'll just include a "funny WAY after the fact" story.

During our first trek from TN to KY I was pretty excited.  I had just gone for my 20 week ultrasound and found out that Little Guy won't be the littlest guy in our house anymore!  We were/are thrilled and I was headed home for a homemade meal of meatloaf and mashed of my favorites!

The previous day the Little Guy and his Accomplice (cousin S) had successfully escaped the house and were found (moments later people....literally like 2 minutes) outside playing in the driveway.  Ah!  Apparently the Accomplice knows how to unlock the deadbolt on the door.  The morning I was leaving for my trip I found the Little Guy coming IN the doggie door at my in-laws house.  Yes, I said IN.  He was wet and dirty and quite please with himself.  After 2 successful escape attempts I felt like I needed to keep a pretty good eye on the Little Guy.

Fast forward to our trip.  We usually stop at a Chic-fil-A just north of Knoxville but the Little Guy was sleeping and I wanted to press on and make good time.  He woke up just south of the KY border and was clearly hungry so we stopped at the first McDonald's (about 100 miles from my house). 

Lately I've had a really hard time keeping him in his seat when we eat.  He wants to play and he wants to stand up.  More often than not he wants to dance.  I admit one of my Mommy faults is remembering to strap him into his high chair.  I don't leave him at the table so I don't usually worry too much about it.  This time I was sitting right next to him and he kept standing up.  I was frustrated because the dog was in the car and I didn't want to stay in there all day.  I kept telling him he needed to sit on his bottom to which he would repeat "bottom" and then stand up again.  Then suddenly he stands up and his foot catches on the top of the high chair and he tumbles out.  Of course loud wailing and crocodile tears ensue and the tired Mama is devastated that the whole restaurant just caught her "Mom of the year" moment.  Naturally neither one of us was very hungry after that although the Little Guy did make a made dash for the play area while I was throwing away our food.

We get out to the car and he was clearly ok but I was a little shaken up.   I didn't think he was hurt but I was still nervous because it looked as if he had bumped his head.  I saw no bruises or even a red spot so I strapped him into his carseat and set the diaper bag in the front seat.  When I'm traveling with the dog I like to open the doors to the car the least amount of times possible.  I don't think he would run away but I still don't want to take the chance.  I can't leave the baby in the car while I'm off chasing the dog!

I walked around from the other side of the car and literally in slow motion I see and hear the dog jump up on the drivers side window and all the doors of the car lock.  You know where the keys are right?  In the diaper bag.  In the locked car.  I told myself not to panic.  Right at this moment my husband calls from some undisclosed location elsewhere in the world and I sort of calmly tell him what has happened.  He suggests I call my Dad to which I uncalmly exclaim that we were over 100 miles from home and I can NOT have the baby sitting in the car for 2 hours.

Thankfully there was a policeman going through the drive-thru.  I ran over to him and frantically said "Can you help me?"  He'd probably already heard through the drive-thru grapevine what an un-fit mother I was letting my child fall out of the highchair so thankfully he took pity on me.  He came over and kept me calm while we waiting for another officer to arrive.  The whole ordeal lasted maybe all of 7 minutes but I swear it was the longest 7 minutes of my life!

I can mostly look back now and laugh on this and thankfully this has been the biggest and most traumatic event in all of our travels.  I have learned the following things though...

1. Always travel with a sound machine
2. Always keep your keys and cell phone on your person
3. Have more than 1 song that you baby likes to hear
4. Pack a little lighter Laura!
5. Traveling 3000 miles in a month is INSANE and I will never, ever, do anything like this again!
6. You and your sweet baby will get sick!
7. The policemen in Williamsburg, KY are seriously my BFF!!!!
8. I can not WAIT for April!!!


Kathy said...

Oh, NO!!
I so know how you feel! I learned this lesson the hard way, as well. When Josh was about 3 months old (it was dead of winter in Germany and COLD) I was putting J in his seat after shopping at the BX. Tossed the keys on the drivers seat, closed the door, turned to put the stroller in the trunk, went back to get in, and my supposedly impossible to lock w/o the keys car, is locked. With my hungry 3 mo in his seat. In the cold. AJ was in the BX still, came out, but didn't have his spare keys, so we flagged down some MP's leaving the BX and asked if they could help. No, they're not allowed to carry slim jims in Germany... they have to call the fire department. Which is literally across the street. So they did, and explained the situation (Josh is screaming bloody murder by this point and AJ has gone to our house to get his spare keys during all this with a sympathetic bystander) and the fire department (Germans) came roaring into the BX parking lot, sirens and lights going, into the PACKED parking lot... needless to say, not only did I feel awful and worried about my cold screaming baby, I now felt HORRIBLY embarrassed as well. They eventually got my keys out through the weather stripping on the driver's door (was never the same) and I got in and rescued the baby just as AJ got back with the spare keys. It was awful!! And I tried to duplicate the situation, closing doors etc in the exact way I did that day, trying to see if it would lock on its own again... never could get it to do it!! So I really do know how you feel! So sorry, but now you'll always keep your keys with you. I do, even 5 years later!!

momto8 said...

I hear you! Just think how much smarter you are for baby #2! ha!
i am your newest follower..pls follow back if you can!

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