The Bryan Kids 2014

The Bryan Kids 2014

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Aquarium adventure

   Yesterday, like every Tuesday, the kids had no school.  So on Tuesdays and Thursdays, I try to play super mom, and find us cool things to do.  My favorite thing is to do these things as a play date, but yesterday, we were on our own.  Occasionally I am lulled into a false sense of confidence with my children.  Colin is potty trained, completely verbal, and usually follows directions.  Molly, well, lets just say I can put more effort towards her now that Colin requires less maintenance.  If I am feeling brave, I frequently even leave the diaper backpack at home, or at least in the car.  When asked what they wanted to do yesterday, Colin expressed a desire to "see the dolphins."  I was surprised by this request.  We have season passes to the aquarium, and with those passes, we can see the dolphin show for free.  On a playdate a few months ago, my friend and I decided to take the kids to the show.  Colin was scared to death.  The show involves a Sea World like dolphin show, a cheesy guy singing about a pirate ship, and a water and light show.  The loud noise and darkness scared him, as well as the "giant fish" jumping out of the water, and he wet his pants.  Not sure if it was from fear, or all of the running water.  Molly thought it was awesome.  Our next two trips to the aquarium, he specifically requested no dolphins.  So, imagine my surprise when he requested this specific thing.  I decided it sounded like a fun day, loaded up the backpack with food and beverage, packed the double jogger, got the kids out the door an hour later than I would have liked, but we were on our way.  Colin talked about the dolphins the entire way down town.
    We entered the aquarium without any trouble at all, with both children strapped into the stroller.  You see, if I am by myself, 5 point restraints just make life easier.  We were told to hurry, the next dolphin show was in 8 minutes.  Nothing good ever comes from rushing my children or myself.  As we near the dolphin show entrance, we are told to park the stroller, and my internal mommy alarm started to go off.  Both children, free roaming, and trying to get somewhere in a timely manner, but Colin had his mind made up.  We were seeing the dolphins.  There are double escalators headed up to the auditorium.  Molly senses we are in a hurry, and immediately turns into noodle baby, limp on the floor.  No time for a time out or discipline, just a quick exasperated "Molly, get off of the floor!" and I grab her up into a hip hold.  This is no longer as easy as it used to be.  The kid is easily 35 lbs of squirming toddler.  Colin is holding my hand, but doesn't understand escalators.  Next thing I know, we are moving up the escalator, as Colin loses his balance, and is laying head headed down the up escalator.  In a panic, I pull him to an up right position, while other parents stare at me in horror.  Ok, maybe not horror, but possibly with pity.  We make it to the next floor, and go in to find seats for the show.  We find three seats together, at the end of a row. Jackpot.  Deep breath, we made it alive.  The show starts, and miraculously, both kids are in awe of the dolphins.  Mommy success.  Now, the water works and the light show start.  Colin leans over and says "Oh no, Mommy, I pee peed in my pants."  Fabulous.  There is nothing to be done until after the show, and he doesn't seem as stressed as he would normally be about the accident.  We make our way to the bathroom, still with out our stroller.  As all mommies of multiple children know, the stroller can be your saving grace in a public bathroom. The ability to lock one child in with a seat belt is priceless. Now, to change an embarrassed toddler, and keep the other one from touching all of the disgusting things in a bathroom.  Soiled pants removed, Colin peeing in potty, me praying there is no automatic flush(sends him over the edge), and Molly...Where is Molly??  Seriously, she is in the next stall over, and she has locked the door.  Awesome...Colin is now changed, and I am debating whether or not my overweight behind is going to fit under the stall door while trying to negotiate with Molly to unlock the door as she giggles at her success.  I truly believe it is her goal to make me look like a jack@#$ in public.  I now convince Colin to climb under the stall "to save" his sister.  OK, both children back with me.  Hand sanitizer all around, and back downstairs to my life line, the stroller.  I tell Colin that mommy is scared of escalators, and that we have to take the normal stairs.  He seems to accept this explanation, and honestly, now I am a little afraid of him falling, so it isn't a lie.  Back in the stroller, and off to see the penguins.  Molly wants to see the penguins,  but of course, the penguin exhibit is under construction.  Now I have a very angry, hungry toddler who didn't get to see the penguins.  I pull out the snacks, and both children relax for a few moments.  The whole place is packed with tourists, and I am experiencing overload myself.  After a quick look around, I ask the kids if they would like to go home and play there.  They both seem to think this is a great idea, so we head out the door through a gauntlet of school kids on a field trip.  After everyone gets locked in to their car seats, I take a deep breath, and realize, it may be a while before I try that on my own again...

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