This morning I met up with a friend who also has a son Arthur’s age. He’s basically the only other 3 year old kid we know who is not a younger sibling of one of Julian’s friends. Of course Arthur completely ignored him for the duration of the playdate. Also, he refused to enjoy any of the features of the water park I took him to. Instead he told me how much he missed Julian (who was at school) and chose to sit as close to me as possible at all times. Only when it was almost time to pack up, he decided to start having some fun.
We had lunch with some people we met at the park; mama had a beer. Because, you know, Monday.
After we picked up Julian from school, Arthur was finally whole again. We went to our neighborhood playground, where he happily chased a bunch of 5 and 6 year old boys for the rest of the afternoon.
It’s so interesting to me how his personality changes so much when he is on his own. He becomes shy and attached. When he is with his big brother, he is so confident and wild, and there is no doubt in my mind that he sees absolutely no difference between himself and these other kids who are a foot taller than he is.
The boys played and played. After their new friends had to go home, some of our usual playground buddies showed up. I sat on the bench with some of the fellow stay-at-home parents and complained about dinner that had to be made, homes that were a mess, and children who were….wait. Where were they?
Oh. Of course. They were playing at the water fountain. That is, you know, for drinking. Ten minutes later all of the kids were soaked. I just gave up and laughed. Especially because I was prepared and had brought swimsuits. But oh well.
And here comes my rookie mistake. I said what could have been and never will. “And I had wanted to take you guys out for tacos! I guess that can’t happen now.”
What an amateur move of me. The boys started to cry immediately. “We want tacos! We want tacos!”
So partly because I felt bad, but mostly because I didn’t actually care, I took two soaking wet boys to the store to pick up things to make tacos. I am such a pushover. We were already so behind schedule, I knew Jeff was going out tonight, the boys needed baths, oh – and breakfast dishes were still sitting in the sink.
Once we were home everything went wrong. Someone peed all over the floor. Someone else had a belly ache – and you can imagine what happened next. Everyone chose to talk constantly, to me, and also request help putting on fireman costumes and whatnot. While I tried to throw together some tacos. In the end, I did it. I cleaned the bathroom, top to bottom, I cleaned the children, top to bottom, and I only burned the beans. (No one noticed.)
Oh, also, these guys. The source of all my anguish and all my joy.