This morning I woke up angry. Spitting fire. Without words to describe what was going through my mind. Coffee didn't help.
BG and I had an appointment downtown to do another experiment at 9:30, and at 8:30 I realized that we weren't dressed and BG hadn't eaten. There was no way in the world to not be late. And I hate being late.
I threw clothes on us both, put her in her car seat with some Cheerios (mom of the year, right here), and booked it to the city.
The pretty young grad student met us at the gate, the same one that did our study last time. And BG sat quietly in my lap and cheerfully watched the video she was shown, only looking away a few times. A physics genius, my one year old. She grabbed the "Where's Pooh" book off the thank you gift shelf before she was even offered something. She babbled and giggled all the way to my car.
I pulled out of the parking lot. My gas light went on. BG started saying "mamamamamamama" and signing for food, both with increasing intensity. I looked at the clock and thought of how long it would take us to get home, of how much I had to do to get there. I turned corners, apologizing to my baby, listening to the petulant woman on my GPS tell me she was "recalculating" every five seconds.
And that is how I found myself in front of the botanical gardens, a furious baby in my back seat, my gas needle below empty, at 10:00 on a Wednesday morning.
And I parked my car.
Climbed into the backseat.
BG giggled when she saw me. We sat in the car and I fed her an applesauce, nursed her, and talked to her a little. Then I scooped up my now-pleasant baby, grabbed my diaper bag, and went inside.
The ticket was $12, which is a lot of money for me (I'm well aware how lame that sounds), but I didn't even pause. I grabbed a map, paid the lady and in we went.
I immediately realized I hadn't brought my stroller and my hip was getting sore, so I set BG down on the ground and let her run. At first I tried to hold her hand and read the map, but I quickly realized I wasn't the one in charge.
So I let go.
We stared at the fish. We pointed at the banzai trees. We walked around the orchid room 5 times.
Then she reached out her hand for me to take it and we walked out.
This job, of being a mom? I'm not patient enough for it. I'm not brave enough for it. I'm not strong enough for it. But this job of being my kid? BG has that one down pat.
And maybe that's all we need.