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The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day



Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
thiegsr
We’ve all had those days. You know what I’m talking about. You feel cursed from the moment you wake up and no matter how you try to put a happy spin on the day or turn it all around, things keep getting worse.

We had that kind of a day last Monday. The day drifted into “terrible” territory at my 5 year old, Story’s, allergist appointment. We waited in the hot examining room for the doctor to arrive for over 35 minutes. When she finally knocked on the door, Story blurted out, “Where have you been? We’ve been waiting in here for forever!” Yikes - no filter on that one. The asthma check up went fine until the allergist asked if Story got a flu shot yet. I scheduled her for a nose mist at the end of the month, but the allergist said, “Kids with asthma can’t get the mist. They need to get the shot, and we can take care of that today.”

Story looked stricken and her face turned pink, “On no, I am not getting a shot today, Mommy.”

She looked serious about this statement and crossed her arms to let us know she meant business, but our doctor turned to her and gently said, “Story, this is the best thing for you. It will only take a minute and you won’t need to come back again for another appointment.” Then, the doctor disappeared and told us that we would need to wait for the flu shot nurse to come.

When the door closed Story freaked out.  I am not even kidding when I say that it was like being in a small room with a rabid tiger.  She is little, but we had two nurses and I holding her down, and she still struggled and screamed like we were killing her.  The nurses just looked at me like, "Lady, you have got to sedate this child of yours.  She is the spawn of Satan." After the 10 minutes of screaming, throwing herself about and getting so pink I thought she would pop, Story relaxed for 2 seconds which was long enough for the nurse to stick her with the needle.  It was over and Story looked at me and said, "That wasn't bad. I mean it did hurt, but not that much." I didn't comment because I was still in a sweaty daze.  

I gathered my coat and my dignity and walked to the receptionist to make Story’s next appointment. The entire waiting room sat in silence and stared at us. I could tell they were all curious to see what kind of human being was capable of making the sounds that emanated from examination room #2. They took quick peeks of Story before hiding their faces behind magazines.

After the allergist, I dropped my 9 year old daughter, Raina, off at piano and I took Story to swim lessons.  This was Story's "reward" swim lesson for finishing her session and moving up to the next level.  When we went to change in the changing stall at the end of the lesson (which went great), I was bending over her to help her put her pants on and she was fooling around - singing and gyrating her hips back and forth.  She swung back without warming like a wrecking ball and accidentally thrust the entire back of her skull into my face.  I almost passed out because it was such a hard hit in such a tender area.  I grabbed my face and instantly felt the swelling begin. I clutched the wall to steady myself and tried hard not to cry. Story crumpled. “I’m so sorry, Mommy!!!” She started to wail. I looked at her while blinking back my own tears and said very calmly, “Honey, put your pants on because we need to get home right now.” She could tell by the tone of my voice that I meant business, so she got her things and we moved quickly to the car.

Story ran ahead of me into the house announcing that she “hurt Mommy, but on accident” while I grabbed for our Ariel Boo Boo Buddy from the freezer. Raina looked at Story and said in her most hurtful voice, “Good going. Way to break Mommy.” As I was reprimanding her for making her sister feel worse than she already did and trying to sit on the couch to ice my face, Raina got her dinner plate full of food and started to walk into the dining room. Because she was distracted, she tripped over her bookbag and her bbq chicken, rosemary potatoes, broccoli and her body went sailing through the air only to end with a horrible thud with a simultaneous shatter.

Raina instantly started to cry, “I broke the ‘You are special today plate’ and I’m a horrible person!” A lump slowly started to rise on her left shin, and she sat in her debris while our pug, Loki, tried to eat around the glass shards. I dropped my ice pack and jumped over to where Raina and her dinner were piled on the floor just to make sure she didn't slice off her fingers or incur more serious injuries.  My husband, Eric, emerged from the kitchen only to contribute, "Raina, why did you put your back pack there?" which only made Raina cry louder about what a horrible, no good rotten person she is.

After we finally all made it to the dinner table in one piece, we did our nightly gratitude ritual (which Story calls “saying our charms”). All of us go around the table and say what we are grateful for and then all of us clap. On days like last Monday, it isn’t always easy to choke out what we are grateful for, but we do it anyway knowing that we are far more fortunate than one day where everything goes horribly awry. Story’s charm: “I got my flu shot over with so now I can watch all of you and hold your hands and tell you to be brave when you get your shot.” Raina’s charm: “I got a solo at school for my Christmas concert and I didn’t get cut by all the glass when I broke the plate. Oh, and this dinner is really good.” My charm: “Both of my eyes aren’t black - just one, and I finished a really good book today, and everyone is healthy.” Eric’s charm: “I am the luckiest guy alive to have the three most beautiful girls in my life.” Who can argue with that?

Just like Alexander says in the movie “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No good, Very Bad Day” we need the really awful days to help us see the beauty in the days that aren’t so awful, and to really appreciate when things go right. We are all going to have the bad days when we get to the dinner table with black eyes, bruised shins and broken hearts. To me even a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day that ends with my family doing charms at the table is a success.
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Comment by michness


Joined: 1/25/2011
Posts: 210
I love this. I hope you don't have another day like that for a long time!
Posted: Friday, October 17, 2014 2:55:05 PM
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Comment by warren


Joined: 6/22/2011
Posts: 293
You will keep us informed about your next bad, awful day, won't you? Please.
Posted: Saturday, October 18, 2014 7:40:30 PM
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