I am embarrassed by my behaviour today.
I think I’ve somewhat learned to handle big life disappointments well, considering how many health ones have hit me recently, never mind throughout my growing up and ensuing adult life. I hurt and grieve but eventually I tumble along until I am eventually able to stand again.
I admittedly do not handle little disappointments quite as sanguinely. Take this morning: it’s a new year and well, the previous year kind of sucked. So the decision was made to begin 2016 with a treat: going for strawberry custard crepes at Cora’s, a local restaurant. I am excited! I love going out for brunch, and this-little-bit-pricey breakfast nook is not one we have been able to visit lately. So as I’m getting ready and fantasizing about a leisurely brunch of sweet crepes, salty bacon, thick coffee and pleasant conversation, the Kiddo starts acting up. He is whiny. He is obstinate. He says that he wants to go to “the sunshine place”* but cries while being placed in his car seat.
With each one of his tear-stained whimpers, my dreams of a satisfactory brunch begin to fade: I mention to Sean that maybe taking a grumpy possibly over-tired two year old to a restaurant may not be a good idea. Sean thinks it will be okay. I pack lots of toys. We get in the car.
Initially, things go smoothly. I sit across from the kiddo. He is distracted by the children at the table behind him. He plays with the various toys we've dragged along from home. We order our crepes. We get the kiddo a bacon and egg sandwich and fruit. He does not eat any of it, but instead devours Sean’s side-ordered plate of bacon. The kiddo still has a piece of that stolen bacon in each hand when he vomits. For the first time.
We clean him up as best as possible and pry the uneaten meat from his closed fists. While not happy to lose his beloved bacon, he is cheerful and (now) feeling better. Sean and I proceed to savour our breakfasts and chat about whatever things married people talk about (grocery lists, plans for the day, the usual chit-chat). In the meantime, a group of six women are seated at the table beside our's.
And then it happens. The projectile vomit nearly hits me before I realize what has occurred. A collective ‘ewwww’ can be heard from the shocked patrons seated next to us. And then. And then he does it again, this time with less oomph and we watch as it merely slides out of his mouth and ever-so-slowly drips down over his shirt and pants. After the initial shock, Sean and I both move into trained parent mode: I hear myself bark orders at the nearest server: I need a cloth NOW.
Sean whips the kiddo’s shirt off, throws the child's winter coat on and runs out to the car. I mop up as best as possible, package the any non-eaten food, frantically pay and swiftly exit the restaurant, leaving behind any hope of a relaxed meal.
It was not the welcome to 2016 experience that I had anticipated. I confess that I was angry; I seethed at the perceived injustice and the ensuing disappointment. All I wanted was a restaurant brunch, a treat. Instead, I left there smelling like vomit and now had laundry to do once home.
I loathe to admit this, but I was grumpy for a lot of today because of this disaster**. It didn’t help that I decided to deal with the brunch fiasco by leaning into control (a rather frenzied cleaning of the house from top to bottom, lymphocele, kidney disease and anemia be damned. I could have left it for one more day. But no. In my anger-riddled mind, it needed to get done and now). Sean and the kiddo wisely escaped to the downstairs.
I am also ashamed to admit that I know that today's ill-conceived emotional outburst in response to the morning's little disappointment is merely because the big seemingly untouchable disappointments in life often seem just that: untouchable. It's easier to get mad at the small stuff, isn't it?
I'm glad that tomorrow is another day.
*Cora's has pictures of smiling suns on its walls and menu.