I enlisted the boys to help me bag groceries. I tried to help Sammy open a paper bag, but he wouldn't tolerate it. He HAD to do it himself. I turned around to see him flopping on the floor, wrestling with that stupid bag and screaming. What the..?! "Sammy! Just let me help you!" "NOOO! Do NOT help me!" "Fine!" I turned back around and bagged the groceries as fast as my arms would allow.
Then I noticed that a woman was trying to walk past the flailing Sam, but he was directly in her way. I gently grabbed his arm and super calmly said, "Come here, Sammy, you're in the way, kiddo." He threw his paper bag and started screaming even louder. "NO! I am NOT moving! Stop GRABBING me so HARD!" The woman was growing impatient (don't blame her), so I picked him up and moved him myself. He went over to the cart and started PUNCHING the cart! Then Elijah picked up on the negative vibe and yelled out "POOPY BUTT!" a handful of times. Oh my goodness! What is happening?!
I had one of those public parenting moments when I knew everyone must be thinking I was a horrible mother with horribly-behaved children. I literally just starting throwing the groceries into the cart and told the boys to hop up and hold onto the sides. In the car I let them know that those delicious-looking popsicles they had picked out? They were not going to be eaten tonight. We'd still do a picnic, but boys who behave like that do not get popsicle treats.
Commence Sammy screaming SO HARD that my ears literally started aching. I have never in my life heard him, or anyone for that matter, scream so hard and loud. And apparently the screaming wasn't enough because he started flailing and thrashing his body around so violently that I began to worry about shaken baby syndrome or a brain injury. I wanted to roll down the windows to give my and Elijah's ears a little relief, but...we were at a stop light. I didn't want to share that joyous sound with so many other people.
When we got home I told Sammy to go inside. He wrapped his seat belt around himself so it would be hard for me to lift him up. He is strong! I had to use all my strength to get him out of the car and carry him inside as he flopped around like a crazy fish. I gave him a swat on his bottom and he screamed louder. Repeat three times. He ran back out to the hot car and wouldn't come out. Sweat was streaming down his head and face, so I grabbed him out again. I locked the car doors, set him on the driveway and went inside. I knew he wouldn't leave the yard, but kept a quiet eye on him. He screamed out there with Cowwy in his arms for 15 minutes.
He came back in with his head down and much calmer. We had a talk about what had happened in the store and the car and everywhere else along the way. He is SO strong-willed and independent. Ugh, these boys! They are going to kill me! Some day this story will be hilarious. Today, not funny. Tiring, bewildering, exhausting, embarrassing...yes, all of that.
And here's the best line of all, after Sammy had calmed but was still upset. "Mommy, I'm not going to live with you anymore. Me and my BAD FRIEND are moving to Russia!"
There you go. My four-year-old is already planning his escape with a BAD FRIEND.
Dan flies home from DC tomorrow night. I can't wait! We're having Sammy's birthday party at the dropzone on Sunday, so I'll be getting ready for that tomorrow. And next week will be nuts, as the little boys and I prepare for a road trip to the east coast. A week from today we'll be rolling into Louisville, Kentucky to spend a few nights with friends. I have WAY too many things to accomplish before then!
Have a great weekend...I hope yours started better than ours!