Greek to Me

February 22, 2010 at 5:21 pm | Posted in Giggles, Lollipop | 12 Comments

local Greek restaurant, lunchtime

Mommy : 30-something who used to work with red pens and AP Stylebook before trading up for red crayons and Curious George
Lollipop: girl-child, wearing princess dress and bubble wand necklace
Giggles: boy-child, brandishing purple glitter comb from most recent Chuck E Cheese winnings
Friend #1: former colleague of Mommy
Friend #2: former colleague of Mommy

Mommy, Lollipop, and Giggles enter restaurant. Friend #1 has already secured table and waves them over. Jackets are tossed on floor removed, high chairs are secured, Purell and animal crackers are distributed. Food is ordered. Mommy is surprised to see “cheese quesadilla” on Greek restaurant menu but considers it sign from heaven that she might survive lunch. (Not leaving such things to chance, she also orders ginormous chocolate chip bribe cookie.)

Mommy and Friend #1 exchange pleasantries.

Friend #1
Hi, Lollipop, how are you?

I have some pee. [Mommy takes her to the restroom, where Lollipop is relieved that toilet is not one of those scary self-flushers.]

Food arrives. Mommy whips out the Purell again. Friend #1 begins to eat. Mommy cuts, tears, dices, chops, removes offending sauces from food, and distributes to children. Friend #1 finishes her meal. Mommy takes first bite of her sandwich.

I have some pee. [Mommy takes her to the restroom, where Lollipop is relieved that toilet has not morphed into scary self-flusher.]

Giggles drains his milk, rejects his pineapple, asks for Lollipop’s milk. Mommy acquiesces. Lollipop, previously content with big-girl cup of Sprite, objects loudly and incessantly.

Friend #2 arrives late, having been stuck in a work meeting. Mommy and Friends #1 and #2 exchange pleasantries.

Friend #2
Hi, Lollipop, how are you?

I have some pee. [Mommy takes her to the restroom. Toilet has still not transformed into scary self-flushing monster.]

Friends #1 and #2 discuss gossip from former workplace; current pet, family, and in-law drama; upcoming vacation plans; latest Target deals; new Sex and the City trailer, etc.

Meanwhile, Mommy: listens with one ear; doles out animal cracker refills, markers, coloring books, and stickers from diaper bag; interjects witty, thoughtful comment to Friends #1 and #2 about how her heartburn is just ghastly with this third pregnancy; attempts to resolve disputes over must-have green marker, must-have school-bus sticker, must-have Piglet-head animal cracker, and must-have napkin covered in quesadilla cheese.

Lollipop, get in your chair and be still or you’re having a timeout. That’s your warning.

I have some poo.

We’re almost finished here, so you can hold it till we get home.

Lollipop “drops” lidless cup of Sprite on the floor.

Mommy (through clenched teeth)
OK, how many hands were you holding that cup with?

Um, two.

Giggles scribbles on high chair with pink marker.

(sprouting new gray hair)
Are you sure? Because I think it was one. (to Lollipop)
No marker on the chair. On the paper, Bubba. The paper. (to Giggles)
And what happens when we hold it with one hand? (to Lollipop)
Keep your shoes on please. (to Giggles)

We spill.

Mommy (ripping out new gray hair)
Yes, we spill. (to Lollipop)
Give me the marker cap, please. (to Giggles)
Now, help me clean this up. (to Lollipop)
Shoes on! (to Giggles)
Put on your jacket while I find the trash can, please. (to Lollipop)

Friend #1 (to Friend #2)
She’s so calm.

Friend #2 (to Friend #1)
I know. She’s such a good mommy.

Fade to black.

When you think your kids you are at your worst, you just might be doin’ all right. (Or be lucky enough to have two good friends who know just the right thing to say.) Either way, take a deep breath. Eat that big honkin’ chocolate chip cookie after the kids go down for their nap. And maybe save them a bite.



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  1. If only we knew before having kids how nice it was to have a meal in a restaurant without having to balance eating, disciplining, cutting up quesadillas, and making multiple potty runs. How nice to have friends who allow you to combine parts of who you were with all the parts of who you are. Hope you enjoyed every bite of that cookie!

  2. Any mother can relate to this! Loved it. Every word.

    I was dealing w/ the two kids at one point, and a friend said pretty much the same thing “you’re so calm!” and I couldn’t wrap my head around it because I did not feel calm. Good to know we can hold it together better than we think!

  3. Love it! (and jealous despite the craziness, as I love me some Greek food!)

  4. This is a great depiction of how a woman’s mind works. Able to simultaneously manage 4 trains of thought at once. I know this Mommy needs a break, so when I go out with friends I leave the kiddo with Daddy and let him run the trains 🙂

  5. S:
    Lollipop was so cute and SO girly! And, Giggles, well, he just steals my heart with his smile. I could flirt with him all day. Your kids are perfect (as in, they are perfectly imperfect and totally fine), you are a great mom and a good friend. I adore you and all three of your little ones. But I would’ve liked you better had you portioned out that cookie to me, too. Would it have helped if I had cried? 🙂

    Love you,

  6. You’re awesome. And your friends are awesome too, for reminding you of what a great mom you are. One of my friends said that to me a few months ago (after a visit that I thought was anything BUT a good example of my patient parenting) and it really meant a lot. I need to remember to do that more often.

  7. Spot on. Loved this. Going out to eat with my kids is sometimes seems a lot more hassle than it’s worth.

  8. Your friends are AWESOME. (And so are you, of course.)

  9. Love the play-by-play. And I can definitely relate, especially with the floating in and out of conversations with friends. And the cold food.

    Glad to have stumbled on this blog. Will be back for sure.

  10. Lovely capturing of a true moment in time.
    And how brave you are! (we just started takin our kids to restaurants and I hold my breath half the meal).

  11. Can totally picture this. And man, I wish I hadn’t lived it so often. 😉

  12. Glad that I am not the only one 🙂 I am always surprised that my friends without children still want to have lunch with Abby and I.

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