I will post about the better half of this weekend's trip later. This post is strictly for all the mommies beating yourselves up for having fallen victim to a "Mommy No-No" at some point in your lives. Boy did I mess up this weekend...
Well, if there was ever an experience to teach me that as a parent, I just can't plan it all...
We were dressed, loaded and in the car on time. We were on the road and in Auburn within 10 minutes of the ETA on my itinerary. We found a spot in the intramural fields for all 4 cars to park alongside each other so we could tailgate in the grass and let the baby play. Kickoff was at 1. Half the crew went to the game while the rest of us packed up the stroller and the babe and set off to Toomer's for pictures and souvenirs.
While there were some people at Toomer's when we arrived, it was easy enough to get some good pictures and walk around campus a bit. The men had no intentions of shopping so they went to a local watering hole. My MIL, sister and I went and bought Ri all kinds of crap, just loving every minute of it. I noticed within an hour that people seemed to have a similar idea- go to Toomer's before the game is over so it isn't so crowded. Well that defeats the purpose when everyone does it, right? You betcha.
The next thing I knew, we were starting to have to bob and weave through people with the stroller. It was starting to make me a little anxious. We decided to go behind Samford and change Ri's diaper and give her a bottle before we all met back up and got the heck out of dodge.
It was a nice, shady spot to recharge; not very populated. My MIL changed Ri as I got her bottle ready. And then it happened. One of my biggest nightmares came true. Right smack in the middle of a town of which I am no longer too familiar, with 83,000 other people there, I realized I had left the nipple to her bottle in a different bottle bag...back at the tailgate... a good 30 minute walk away.
*Sidenote: I have one of those children that is happy as a lark one second and then, a light switch goes off and Mr. Hyde appears. She is suddenly ravished and you better have a bottle ready, and ready now. So we were trying to prevent this all-too-common reaction of hers altogether.
My mind starts racing as I am mentally screaming at myself. Are you serious? Did you really do that? Who does that? How COULD you do that?! What the heck are you going to do to fix this problem, you idiot!?
My MIL, calm and collected after having raised 3 boys, tells me to run over to Toomer's Drugs (we are sure they sell bottles) and just buy one. She will pacify the baby until I get back.
I take off. And am halted 5 seconds later at the corner by a sea of people. I start trying to weasel through, knowing this is the courteous thing to do, but getting me nowhere.
My child is hungry and needs me. And it is my fault.
So I just start pushing. The corner is blocked off for a band. I have to turn back around to where I started and go to the other corner. This cannot be happening right now.
Toomer's Drugs only carries souvenirs now. No drugstore-type items. Really? I stand in the corner for a second, not wanting anyone to see my panic as I try to calm down and slow my brain enough to THINK. Ok, what should I do?! Where is the nearest drugstore or grocery store? Not within walking distance.
Store next door has none and tells me to try Toomer's.
I am now panicked and trying not to lose all composure in front of
I go back to the bookstore where we had just spent a fortune on a happy baby an hour or so earlier, and pushed my way to the cash register. My voice and lip quivered as I spoke those words that sounded so shameful to me, "Do you sell any baby bottles?" I just knew that because of the look on my face, the lady would immediately be thinking, "What a horrible mother would forget the necessities to feed her child?"
I could also hear all the breastfeeding moms out there thinking, "If you were doing the natural thing and breastfeeding, this never would have happened."
Instead, all she said was "No, but we have some sippy cups... Are you ok?"
And then... the floodgates opened.
I lost whatever composure I had left, right smack there in the middle of the store. "No, I am not. I am an idiot and left part of my child's baby bottle at the tailgate a gazillion miles away. She is only 7 months old and she is hungry. I can't get to her because of all of the people and the phones don't work to call my husband and tell him I am a mad woman running around town with a starving child waiting nearby." The guy in the framing department motioned for me to sit in the back room as I tried to catch my breath (yes, I was hyperventilating from the anxiety). The cashier found me the ONE sippy cup they had left. I don't know if she even said anything. I was back out the door in a dead sprint to where my MIL was undoubtedly rocking my screaming, starving child.
I had stopped crying but could not even swallow- my mouth was dry from hyperventilating and running for the last hour. As soon as I turned the corner and spotted them, I fell apart again. Uncontrollable sobs- of pity- and thankfulness that I had gotten back in one piece and my child was still alive (I know, get a grip).
The men are standing there. They had apparently walked up right as I had taken off on the hunt of my life. First thing out of my husband's mouth? "Why wouldn't ya'll have just started walking to the tailgate?" Not.helpful. I could have killed him right then and there. And my child? Sound asleep in my MIL's arms.
I looked like a lunatic. I was shaking, exhausted- mentally and physically, feeling the mommy guilt for forgetting such a thing and anger towards my husband for just not.getting.it.
I am responsible for every little thing this human being needs and does, as well as myself. Umm... that is a lot of pressure!! I am my biggest critic. I expect there to be an oops once in a while but this was one I just couldn't quit shaming myself for. And in a moment of panic, in the middle of such an event, one's mind doesn't really think things through before just jumping into action. I thought I was doing what I had to do in order to keep my baby from losing it as well.
Being a new mom is the most challenging thing I have, and will, ever do. A challenge that no matter the obstacles, it is one I will never ever regret.
Yes, one day, I will look back at Saturday and laugh. I already am, a little. But until then, to all you new moms out there- it is OK to forget things, have a little down time, not get everything right the
And we need each other to vent and fall back on for encouragement because although I love my husband, let's face it- in a MOMMY situation, he is clueless to what I am going through. He has no idea how detrimental it was to me that I forgot one lousy nipple.
So! That is my crazy lady story of the day that I am no longer ashamed to tell. I know there are other moms out there, tight-lipped in fear of public opinion. I have decided that if I am not completely honest with myself and others, and stand by my actions, choices, and goofs, I will never be able to let go of my anxieties and completely embrace my role as a mommy.
Here are some articles I definitely needed to read after Saturday. Hell, after any day.