The countdown

Lets start at the beginning, shall we? Which started this morning, when I woke the kids up and told them it was time to go. You all know that moment, the one when you realize your up late, yet again, only today you really don’t have TIME to be late? Yea. That one.

The kids left this morning to see their grandparents for two weeks, this means that this morning I needed to have them at the airport no later than a certain time. Right? Right.

So after getting the kids up and ready and out the door with their bags, and stuff, and who knows what else, because I really didn’t even think they packed…we were off. Only to discover that lo-and-behold, I had read the ticket wrong. Infact, we were a few hours BEFORE time. I don’t honestly know how this happened, so don’t ask. It just…did.

But since they were already dressed, and up, and in the car, and we were at the airport, I couldn’t just…go back. We didn’t really have time for that, so instead, we decided to make a “Quick trip” to Walmart to get a few necessities that they had forgotten, and I hadn’t remembered until then. Things like tooth brushes, and shampoo. The things that they never use here at home, but I wanted to send with them just to make it look like we have things all under control up here.

Whats important to note here is that “Quick trip” and “Walmart” were used in the same sentence. I know better than that, really. I do.

Whats also important to note, is that just because we were a spell early, didn’t mean we had all day – we had close to an hour, because the airport is on the other side of the channel, which means a two minute ferry ride is needed. The only problem is the ferry leaves every 15 minutes, so if you miss the one your wanting, you wait 30 more minutes. Confused? Good. Your tracking well.

We headed out to Walmart, which is maybe 3 minutes away.

Unloaded, and headed in. I believe this may have been the first mistake. I know I have mentioned before that I don’t do crowds that well. Lots of people, together, in small spaces tend to do me in. Josh doesn’t handle these situations that well either – for different reasons of course. But it really was a recipe for disaster. And disaster it was.

After making our way in the door, past the loud animated toys and kids begging for money, past the greeters, shopping carts, horrible smells, and obnoxious adults, we were into the main lands.

Which were.

Overflowing with people.

Because folks, it’s the last week of Christmas here – and ½ the town is out there shopping their hearts out.

The aisle that was needed was simply a few paces to the right. It shouldn’t be that crowded was what I told myself – but it was. Because the four other aisle nested right beside this one, were the Holiday aisles. The ones that change constantly, and are always flooded with people, pushing and shoving, grabbing and fighting.

We made our way to where we were going with little trouble, grabbed the first few things we saw and attempted to make a quick get away – which wasn’t to happen.

The gob of people who had followed us in were walking past, on their way to the over crowded aisles, which pretty much left us blocked in. Which more or less turned into panic. Being trapped in a walmart aisle. I considered saying that I wouldn’t buy them toothbrushes, I would sell our souls, whatever, just let us out. Let us out now…but with the kids in tow, I didn’t figure it was a time to be freaking it up.

So we waited, and waited, for what seemed like hours, but in reality was only probably seconds.

The lines were brutal, because we all know that Walmart refuses to employ more than two people at the check stands, especially this time of year. The rest of them are off at meetings, or stocking the bare shelves, or sweeping the floors…or tending to the “Clean up in aisle 4” mishaps.

Since we were there, and since we were in the right check out, I decided to get some smokes to keep from having to go back into another store. Which was fine, until the lady in line behind us had a fit about me buying that with “Those precious children” and proceeded to give Josh what she later referred to as a “Love pat.”

I don’t know about you, but I know that if she had tried that with me, things would have been a little less pretty, and let me tell you things were NOT pretty. Josh was barely hanging in there, I know better than to take him into busy stores, I know how he reacts, but he was doing fine…he was clearly freaked out but he was doing ok – standing there as close to me as he could get, with his death grip on his bear – but he wasn’t screaming, he wasn’t freaking, he wasn’t doing much of anything, until that lady put her hand on his head – and then life at Walmart stopped.

Or atleast, life within a five mile radios stopped…and because its how I am, I finished buying what we had went in for, and paid, before walking out with a completely melted down version of the Josh we had brought in.

I know how he reacts, and I know why he reacted, so it wasn’t that big of a deal right then and there. He calmed down once we left the store, and didn’t seem to have too much permanent damage (a big lip from hitting the counter on his way down). We made it to the airport, on time, got the kids checked in, said good bye and the watched Josh freak out again, because they were leaving him…

Which was a bit harder to deal with than the Walmart melt down.

I knew what caused both of them, but the first one was easier to deal with. The first one was a result of too much in too short of time…too much noise, a stranger touching him, someone startling him, it was a given. But it was ok.

The second one was because they were leaving him, and although I tried to explain to him that they would be back – he didn’t seem to believe me, because all he saw was them walking away, leaving him on the opposite side of the glass – when he clearly wanted to go with them…

He doesnt attach himself to people that easily, doesnt trust that many people, doesnt get upset over too many people…but Madison and Dylan are on the top of his list.  They make his world go ’round, and they were leaving him…walking away calmly was not something he had planned on doing.

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