I’m sure you’ve all heard the phrase ‘don’t wake a sleeping baby’. Just by common sense standards it’s something you wouldn’t do, right?… Well, apparently not.
Let me start off by saying that Donovan is not big on naps to begin with, he stopped taking a morning nap when he was 6 months old and now it is a gift if he sleeps an entire 2 hours in the afternoon. The kid goes down and is up 15 minutes later like he’s been asleep all day. Needless to say when he does fall asleep I do everything I can to maximize his slumber, which can be hard to do while out running errands, but it is possible. If I play my hand right I can get all my errands done in an hour and still be able to get home and put Donovan down for a few extra stationary restful minutes.
I am lucky to have a week day off (I highly recommend it, it’s like a mid-week vacation), which is when I choose to run my errands, and I was pretty confident that I had perfected maximizing my time in that day… No, I was damn sure I had it down, until the one day when it all went to hell.
This was just a few days before Donovan’s first birthday and I had to run to the grocery store to pick up a few last minute things for his birthday dinner. We had breakfast and had been playing and reading books into the early afternoon. He was starting to get restless, but I didn’t want to put him down for a nap before running to the store, so I sat him down for lunch… That was a little bit of a struggle, but we prevailed. Within a few minutes he had clean hands, clean face and a clean diaper and we were ready to hop in the car.
To my surprise my back seat beast did not succumb to the motion of the car, oh no, instead he began making a low monotone noise, a single note on and on until he ran out of breath, then a gulp of air, and right back to it. This was his attempt at scaring the sleep away. When his eyelids began to droop his volume would increase until he felt he had adequately woken himself back up, then it was back to a dull murmur.
Finally, about 12 minutes into the car ride and he was out, of course this coincided perfectly with my parking the car at the grocery store. I had to run in for literally 4 things, I knew exactly where each item was, I had my route planned perfectly, I could be in and out in 5 minutes… Whats the worst that could happen?
Three steps into the store and I could see my well planned strategy crumbling around me… Immediately an older woman, who I’m sure is very lovely when you get to know her, came over using a voice not regulated for the inside, screeched, “How cute! He’s sleeping!” Nope, not any more… Thanks lady.
After that it was over. It was like a rock slide, it started with a pebble which knocked into a stone and that slammed into a rock which careened into a boulder, and everyone just watched the disaster occur.
After the initial jolt back into the conscious world I could only keep Donovan calm and quiet long enough to hear and reply to the next stranger we encountered… “Look at those curls!”… Yup, lots of them… Fast paced breathing. “He is adorable”… Thank you, you won’t think so for long though… Whaling. “Aw, is he cutting teeth?”… Yes (absolutely not), he has 2 coming in (fake it)… Piercing screams.
I was making my way to the register, the end was in sight, and then I realized all of the judging eyes on me. This was the walk of shame all grown up. My face was hot, I kept my eyes down and found the shortest checkout line, put my basket on the floor and tried to calm my very angry human. I don’t sing so I was humming ‘Hush Little Baby’ to Donovan when a man got in line behind me, he picked up my basket from the floor and emptied it onto the belt for me and began singing along to my humming. When I turned to thank him he put a hand up and said “I’ve had a few days like that myself”.
So just to be clear… Yes, I know my child is sleeping. Yes, he does have curly hair, No! you cannot touch it, or him. Thanks, I think he’s cute too. Is he cutting teeth? Probably not, but I will tell you anything so you stop looking at me like I just stabbed my own child. Let’s just stop stating the obvious so I can buy my peppers and onions and get out of here! Now let’s not ever do that again… Thanks!