Last night after the kids went to bed I went to Target by myself. At first it was LOVELY AND PERFECT: driving there in the pretty sunshine all by myself, listening to music; browsing at length in a complicated sale section where decisions had to be made, without having to say, "Could you LET MOMMY CONCENTRATE for JUST A MINUTE??!?"; not having to get snacks or drinks of water for anyone; etc.
Then, though, I started feeling panicky. This has happened the last few times I've gone out by myself during the evenings, and what I'd like to know is WTH? I'm strolling along having a perfectly nice time, loading the cart without having to wedge things in around the complaining children, and the next thing is that I start feeling edgy and nervous, and like maybe I should just ditch my cart and go home. The lighting in the store seems all off because it's getting dark outside, and the employees are doing cleaning-up routines, and WHY AM I EVEN HERE?? I DON'T NEED THIS STUFF! WE CAN DO WITHOUT TOILET PAPER, SURELY!
I had several things I was allegedly panicking "about," but I think it was like when you're sleeping and there's a weird sound and your brain tries to justify it by altering your dream to make it fit. Your brain is all, "Wait, we're in school, why is an alarm clock going off? That makes no sense," and so then in your dream you're still trying to take the test but now the school's smoke detector is malfunctioning and the teacher is making you keep working on the test anyway.
Anyway, I felt like in Target my brain was thinking, "Wait, we're just shopping at Target, a store we LOVE, why are we panicking? That makes no sense," and so then it searched around in the archives for Panicky Subjects I must be trying to access since otherwise why all the complicated emotions over cans of lime-flavored sparkling water? It can't be the sparkling water, so it must be panic about Rob's impending trip through adolescence, or about how I'm spending too much money and probably Paul will lose his job and THEN I'll rue the day I spent $1.24 on a clearanced flower pot!!!
Well, so, I managed not to ditch the cart, but I cut the trip short and went home with my cereal and toilet paper and $1.24 flower pot. The whole way home I still felt all weird and skitty, and my poor brain had to continue scrambling to find some sort of sensible explanation ("Aaaaack, other people's cars are scary and contain scary people! The young man in that car has Alarming Hair!!").
I felt better once I got home and made Paul listen to the whole story, complete with vigorous arm movements and rising-pitch/volume voice, but I think perhaps these evening Outings By Myself are not working as therapeutic relaxation.
Gift ideas for an 8-year-old, part 2 of 2 - Last week I talked about the gifts we were getting/considering for Edward, who is turning 8 next month. This week it’s Elizabeth’s turn: not “girl gifts,” ...