Thursday, July 8, 2010
I pushed Parker into the airport in The Stroller. I had a giant bag flung over my shoulder. I had to get upstairs in order to begin The Security Process and get to our gate. My eyes scanned the area for an elevator sign, a recessed hallway of elevators, anything that looked like an elevator area.
All I could see were restroom signs and Escalators.
I’m sure if I had tried to look harder and pushed The Stroller around and around I would have found the secret, hard-to-find elevator for families and old women. But, no. Stupidly, I had a surge of confidence in my Stroller/Escalator abilities.
I have seen people take their children up escalators in a stroller before. It’s not like these are superhumans, and I am not. “I can do that too!” I thought.
So, we got on, and there I was, standing next to The Stroller and holding the back wheels up and looking quite proud of my expert-traveling capabilities and general supreme parenting skilz.
But anytime you actually start thinking that Supermom can exist, that idea will knock you on your ass. Literally.
We got to the top of the escalator and I planned to just push Parker right onto the ground and keep going. There is a Lip that exists at the top of the Escalator, correct? A small thing, this Lip, but mighty enough to instigate death or severe injury.
It all happened in a mad instant, but if it had occurred in slow motion, this is what it looked like.
The Stroller tire hit the Lip, and the force of it knocked The Stroller forward with force and gusto onto the rotating Escalator steps. Parker was face down, facing his enemy close-up, while still strapped into the stroller.
Danger, metal, hell and tarnation filled my mind. I started screaming. Parker was screaming. My instinct was to grab Parker and get him out of The Stroller, but try as I might, I could not get him unstuck, and a mess of stroller and toddler kept rotating on top of the moving Escalator stairs! So, I just pushed on the entire Stroller/Toddler screaming mess as hard as I could and got if off of the rotating chaos. I grabbed Parker out of the stroller and held him close – he was crying and screaming but there were no apparent injuries (amazingly enough).
A group of stewardesses and people started approaching – “Is he alright?!” “Is everything ok?!” “Oh my gawd!”
I looked around. The top of the Escalator spit us out right in front of the food court. I saw families, eating their McDonald’s with their mouths literally hanging open and staring at me.
There was nothing more for me to do, but put my poor, poor (yet resilient) bub into the stroller, hold my head high past the food court people, and keep going. Parker had quieted down, and we had our next hurdle to jump: Security.
Next up, we encountered loud, yelling Security woman. “Why is he in a stroller?! He is a big boy!!”
I was thinking, “Shut UP! Don’t give him any ideas, you loud annoying person who thinks you know what is best! You are not the mother of MY little maniac!” This woman had not seen Parker wriggle out of the stroller earlier and lay in the street. She has not seen him run through the aisles of Target (like they’re jet ways), nor bounce over and over in a booth when un-contained in a high chair. In high stress situations (public), my bub needs straps and a confined space.
I simply said, “It is a containment issue.”
The loud, yelling Security woman did not understand the word ‘containment,’ and just kept shouting about, “You should be walking by your mommy, helping her out, you’re a big boy, why are you in a stroller?!”
(My boy is two. TWO. What two-year-olds WALK NEXT TO their mommy in exciting public places, I beg of you?! Ok, do not answer that. If your two-year-old does that, I don’t want to know.)
Eventually, we made it through security, and when our tubs full of shoes, jackets, bags, and liquids (and, yes, The Stroller) came out the other side, Parker began frantically kissing me all over my face in joy.
This made it all better. I realized, we are in this together! He does not think I have tried to kill him multiple times today! To him, I had SAVED him multiple times! I WAS mother extraordinaire! Some say the best you can do is handle strife with grace. We did not really handle it with grace (more like bulls in a China shop or chickens with our heads cut off), but once the scary parts were over, we carried on in the manner of, “I meant to do that, he he,” or “Whatever!”
Parker and me, we can do anything. Parker and me, we’re like peas and carrots.
(And, The Stroller? We had a nice bonfire the other night, friggin’ ass stroller is gone.)