November wasn’t my month, which is why I haven’t been blogging or doing much of anything except trying to keep my head above water, what with Jake being gone and me being home alone with the two little guys for a year.
It all caught up to me in November, capped by the day June, Katie and I cruised into Walmart to buy some stuff and June immediately started complaining about feeling nauseous. I picked her up and put her in the cart so she could lie down (you can do that when you’re four) and happened to pass a tower of those aluminum turkey roasting pans. I pulled a medium sized one off the shelf and handed it to her, telling her if she needed to throw up, do it in this.
No sooner had the words left my mouth did June grasp the pan and heave into it. I didn’t realize she had already passed the Code Red stage. It tried to play it cool as families sauntered around me, casually gaping at my child’s worst hour.
When she was finished, she handed me the roasting pan full of “choke,” as she calls it, and lay back down in the cart. I wasn’t quite sure my next move. I momentarily contemplated leaving it in Aisle 5 next to the Glade Plug-Ins but propriety compelled me to at least attempt to act like a responsible grown-up.
I decided to bring the tray to the front of the store to the restrooms. June threw up at the very rear of the store. Walmart, as you know, is colossal, a vast expanse of Great Values and Hamburger Helper. There was no room in the back of the cart for the tray; rather, June would not stand to be in such close proximity to it, so I had to carry the tray while pushing the cart to the front of the store.
I instinctively didn’t want passers-by to see what was in the tray so I held it aloft, like a deliveryman carrying a pizza. This would be a crafty move if I was a tall person. I’m only 5’3 1/2 so anyone over lilliputian height could see all the mucky slosh in the tray.
I made it to the front of the store where I parked the cart right in front of the ladies room (I wasn’t about to deal with unloading both kids at this particular moment), ran inside and flushed June’s gift down the toilet. I then turned and jammed the roasting pan into the garbage receptacle along the wall. I smoothed my hair before exiting the bathroom.
I pushed my cart over to the nearest empty check out station and tried to explain the situation to the cashier. “So…uh… I need to pay for everything that’s in here, in my cart, except for this aluminum roasting pan that my daughter spewed in….that’s in the trash. In the ladies room.”
She looked confused.”Uh, lemme call a manager over, will ya?”
A manager, a female, came over. I attempted to explain the situation again. I think she could just see the coming meltdown wafting from my being because she looked at me, waved her hand, and said, “Go. Just go.”
It was like she was saying, “Been there. Done that. Cleaned it.”
She knew what I was going through. I’ve never been so grateful to a box store manager in my life.
(I did have to pay for all the other stuff in my cart first though. The aluminum roasting pan was on the house.)