….I’m driving along, peacefully, no particular destination in mind, when my car begins to spin out of control. Nothing I do to steer out of the spin or slow the vehicle is even remotely effective; the car is whipping about, Tazmanian Devil style, and I am powerless to stop it. Panic races through my mind, as the most important human on the planet is blithely strapped into his safety seat behind me. If something happens to Zachary Perry, my world will cease to turn. My life will no longer have meaning. HE. MUST. BE. PROTECTED. Eventually the car comes to a stop, safely on the side of the road. The car is undamaged, no one is hurt, and I go merrily on my way, as if nothing ever happened. And then I wake up….
This recurring dream that has plagued my sleep quite often recently has caused me to draw some parallels to surviving parenthood.
The day could be going just swimmingly– The sun shining and a cool breeze blowing during back yard time; no one steps in dog shit, and no meltdowns. We have plenty of fruit snacks to go ’round and the milk is flowing, no meltdowns. Phineas and Ferb, the obvious cartoon of choice, is running a marathon, no meltdowns. Dinner is on the stove simmering while toy choo-choos seem to be the most entertaining and quiet toy ever brought into our house. And BAM! Meltdown of the century ensues.
Nothing I am doing to soothe Zac’s out-of-nowhere woes is even remotely effective; In fact, he seems to scream louder and flail more violently each time I offer him something to placate him. The fruit snacks that, 5 minutes ago, were the most essential gift of life, are now angrily sailing across the kitchen. Phineas and Ferb’s typically revered antics and songs are ignored. Toys are kicked and/or thrown. Mommy is at a loss. And just as soon as I think the madness will cause me to kick and cry with him or just plain lose my mind…
It stops. As quickly and without warning as it began.
The spinning vehicle which nearly just drove over a cliff of imminent doom climbs into my lap with his Elmo book and says, “weeeed, momm-uh.” Noone is hurt. No property is damaged. And so I read Elmo’s Color Guessing Game for the 112th time. And we go on about our evening as if no disaster ever threatened the balance…